Get our free email newsletter with just one click

Sweet Charity revival leads Watermill Theatre new season

by -

A reimagining of musical Sweet Charity leads the Watermill Theatre in Newbury’s latest season.

Three world premieres, including a play by Ian Hislop and Nick Newman, also feature.

Gemma Sutton, whose credits include Strictly Ballroom, will play the lead in Sweet Charity, which is directed by the Watermill’s artistic director Paul Hart.

Composer Sarah Travis and musical director Charlie Ingles will adapt the score by Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields for a company of actor-musicians.

Hart said: “In a year of revelations about the exploitation of women Sweet Charity seems timely.

“There’s an argument that attitudes haven’t moved on enough since the piece was written – something we’re fascinated to explore.

He added: “Bringing the Watermill’s unique treatment to a musical that cries out for dynamic use of instrumentation will give a bold twist to songs like I’m a Brass Band and The Rhythm of Life.’

Hislop and Newman’s new play Trial by Laughter, based on their original BBC Radio 4 drama, runs from September 20 to October 27. It is a co-production with Trademark Touring.

The Watermill’s Christmas show will be a new adaptation of Robin Hood by children’s author Laura Dockrill, directed by Laura Keefe.

Writer in residence Danielle Pearson has adapted Charlotte Bronte’s Jayne Eyre in a stripped back version for three actors, which will run from October 29 to November 2.

The season at a glance:

Sweet Charity by Neil Simon, Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields
Directed by Paul Hart
July 26 to September 15, press night on July 30

Trial by Laughter by Ian Hislop and Nick Newman
Directed by Caroline Leslie
September 20 to October 27, press night September 24

Jane Eyre by Danielle Pearson
Directed by Chloe France
October 29 to November 2, press night October 30

Easy Virtue by Noel Coward
Performed by the Watermill Young Company
Directed by Seamus Allen
November 7 to November 10, press night on November 8

Robin Hood by Laura Dockrill
Directed by Laura Keefe
November 15 to January 5, press night November 17



We need your help…

When you subscribe to The Stage, you’re investing in our journalism. And our journalism is invested in supporting theatre and the performing arts.

The Stage is a family business, operated by the same family since we were founded in 1880. We do not receive government funding. We are not owned by a large corporation. Our editorial is not dictated by ticket sales.

We are fully independent, but this means we rely on revenue from readers to survive.

Help us continue to report on great work across the UK, champion new talent and keep up our investigative journalism that holds the powerful to account. Your subscription helps ensure our journalism can continue.