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Nottingham Playhouse announces new productions for Autumn 2017

The Cherry Orchard Square

After 18 years at Nottingham Playhouse, Giles Croft will be stepping down as Artistic Director after directing The Cherry Orchard in November 2017.  Anton Chekhov’s last and greatest play tells the story of a family on the edge of ruin and a country on the brink of revolution. When Ranevskaya returns to her country home – with its famous orchard – she is torn between its past and the future. By turns tragic and funny, this new version by Olivier Award-winner Simon Stephens (A Doll’s House, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time), is both dynamic and profound.

Giles Croft has chosen this masterpiece as his final play – and first Chekhov – as Artistic Director. He leaves an incredible legacy of productions, including Polygraph, Rat Pack Confidential, All Quiet on the Western Front, The Ashes, Tony’s Last Tape, Any Means Necessary and The Kite Runner.

Giles said: “During my time at Nottingham Playhouse I have been fortunate enough to direct work by writers as varied as Robert Lepage, Henrik Ibsen and Noel Coward so when thinking about what would be my final production I was unsure of where to begin. I knew that it had to be a play that I love, that it should be connected with the theme of change and would also present me with a new challenge. I have never directed Chekhov, I love The Cherry Orchard and is there a better play about change?  I am also delighted to be using Simon Stephen’s sharp, bright and lucid version which connects me to another important strand of work during my time at Nottingham Playhouse, living playwrights. All in all the perfect valedictory production.”

Stephanie Sirr, Chief Executive of Nottingham Playhouse said: “As ever Giles has put together a really compelling season for us to enjoy.   Finishing his tenure as Artistic Director with one of the world’s greatest plays – The Cherry Orchard – feels both ambitious and very fitting. I can’t wait to see it.”

Nottingham Playhouse is delighted to announce that its first show of Autumn 2017 will be Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, a co-production with York Theatre Royal.

The most famous love story our country has ever produced, yet the women don’t work, the servants don’t speak, and who cares how filthy rich Mr Darcy is when he is so arrogant and RUDE? Georgian England was a world where men had property whilst women had smelling salts and piano lessons. Lucky them. Elizabeth Bennet is witty and clever, has terrible manners and muddy shoes. But with no independence, is her ending actually happy? Or have we been distracted by Colin Firth and frilly shirts?  If you’ve always heard people saying “Austen is so funny” and you never got it – you will now!

In a brand new comic-adaptation by stand-up comedian Sara Pascoe with an original score from Emmy the Great and directed by Susannah Tresilian (Posh) prepare yourself for a playful, truthful and occasionally disrespectful take on this brilliant novel.

Susannah Tresilian said: “It is a dream come true to be asked to direct a new adaption of Pride and Prejudice, one of history’s greatest love stories.  I’m interested in taking a fresh look at it, whilst staying loyal to the original. I’m so pleased to be working with two other Austenites, the brilliant Sara Pascoe and Emmy the Great, to create an authentic Pride and Prejudice for a modern audience – combining, one might say, a 21st century sense with a 19th century sensibility…”

Sara Pascoe said: “I am massively excited to be adapting the book for the stage and demonstrating Austen’s courage and wit to a new generation of theatre goers. I hope our fresh and funny version will make existing Pride and Prejudice fans fall in love with the characters all over again.”

Posted on 09 February 2017

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