Mark Rylance is to make his Bristol Old Vic debut in the world premiere of Semmelweis, as part of the venue’s new 2020 season.
Conceived from an original idea of Rylance’s, the play is based on the true story of Hungarian scientist and doctor Ignaz Semmelweis, and is produced by Sonia Friedman productions, the National Theatre and Shakespeare Road.
Based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby, new production Gatsby will premiere at the theatre in September, and is adapted by Maria Aberg and Joel Horwood.
The season also includes Wonder Boy, directed by Sally Cookson, in collaboration with writer Ross Willis. The play was selected for development through Bristol Old Vic’s annual Open Session for West Country writers.
Cookson’s production of A Monster Calls will also return to the venue, while former Bristol Old Vic Young Company director Miranda Cromwell will direct the Christmas show, The Little Mermaid.
Morris said: “Great artists can see round corners. Their view of the world is unique and their gift is the ability to communicate that view to the rest of us. That’s why we love the work of Bob Dylan, or Picasso; Stormzy, Shakespeare or Sarah Kane.
“But our 2020 Year of Artists isn’t just about them. Because exactly that same creative spark is in the rest of us; every child in school, every professional in the workplace, every patient in hospital, every citizen in a healthy society.”
“The evidence of this year’s Durham Report is that creative opportunity is transformative for every child in every school, and our contention is that it’s equally valuable for all of us throughout our lives. This year is a celebration of the creativity in us all, and a clarion call for increased investment in creative opportunity for everyone,” he added.
Season at a glance:
Romantics Anonymous by Wise Children
Directed by Emma Rice
January 18 to February 1
Faustus: That Damned Woman by Chris Bush
Directed by Caroline Byrne
March 10 to 21
The Last of the Pelican Daughters devised by the Wardrobe Ensemble
Co-directed by Jesse Jones and Tom Brennan
April 21 to 25
I Think We Are Alone by Sally Abbott
Co-Directed by Kathy Burke and Scott Graham
April 28 to May 2
A Monster Calls based on the novel by Patrick Ness, inspired by an idea from Siobhan Dowd
Directed by Sally Cookson
June 2 to 6
Semmelweis by Stephen Brown in collaboration with Tom Morris and Mark Rylance
Directed by Tom Morris
June 13 to July 25
Gatsby adapted by Maria Aberg and Joel Horwood
September 12 to October 3
Wonder Boy by Ross Willis
Directed by Sally Cookson
October 17 to November 7
The Little Mermaid
Directed by Miranda Cromwell
November 26 to January 10, 2021
The Political history of Smack and Crack by Ed Edwards
Directed by Cressida Brown
January 22 to 25
Mid Life by Sheila Chapman
Directed by Lucy Richardson
February 12 to March 8
Ubu! A Singalong satire by Alfred Parry
January 8 to 25
Kneehigh in association with Bristol Old Vic
The Marble Factory