News Archive

Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 20th July 2012

Noel Coward's Volcano, about the decadent and scandal ridden life of British ex-pats in 1950s Jamaica, with Jenny Seagrove, Dawn Steele, Jason Durr, Finty Williams, Perdita Avery, Tim Daish and Robin Sebastian, directed by Roy Marsden, which is currently touring, will transfer to the Vaudeville Theatre, opening on 16th August. The producers are Thelma Holt and Bill Kenwright.

Forthcoming productions at Southwark Playhouse, at London Bridge, will include John Van Druten's I Am A Camera, based on Christopher Isherwood's memoir Goodbye To Berlin, with Rebecca Humphries and Freddie Capper, directed by Anthony Lau, opening at the Vault on 5th September, produced by Paulden Hall Productions in association with folie a deux; and Susanna Centlivre's The Busy Body, the 18th century comedy about lovers determined to wed and fathers determined to stop them, directed by Jessica Swale, opening on 14th September, produced by Red Handed Theatre Company, Chantelle Staynings and Southwark Playhouse.

The autumn season at the Orange Tree Theatre, in Richmond, will comprise Ana Diosdado's Yours For The Asking, translated by Patricia W O'Connor, the story of a journalist's chaotic hunt for the real news at the heart of an advertising scandal, directed by Sam Walters, opening on 7th September; Jules Feiffer's The White House Murder Case, which charts an American presidential election against the backdrop of an inadvertent military massacre by nerve gas, directed by Christopher Morahan, opening on 12th October; Henrik Ibsen's Love's Comedy, in a new version by Don Carleton, about the struggle of a revolutionary musician-poet to come to terms with falling in love, directed by David Antrobus, opening on 16th November; and Georges Feydeau's Sauce For The Goose, translated by Peter Meyer, a classic farce of marital infidelity, directed by Sam Walters, opening on 21st December.

New York TheatreNet: Ruth and Augustus Goetz's The Heiress, adapted from Henry James's novel Washington Square, about a woman being pulled between her father and a suitor who may be motivated by greed, with David Strathairn, Jessica Chastain, Dan Stevens and Judith Ivey, directed by Moises Kaufman, will open at the Walter Kerr Theatre on 1st November. News, information and special offers about theatre on and off Broadway can be found on New York TheatreNet, via the link opposite below.

John Muirhead and Mike Charlesworth's Baggage, a comedy about college friends who reunite and attempt to repair their damaged relationship after struggling with the world of online dating, directed by Audrey Cooke, will open at the Arts Theatre, off Charing Cross Road, on 12th September.

Shakespeare: Staging The World, a new exhibition at the British Museum until 25th November, explores the world and works of the world's greatest playwright. The exhibition provides a new insight into the emerging role of London as a world city 400 years ago, interpreted through the perspective of Shakespeare's plays. One of the key innovations of the period was the birth of the modern professional theatre: purpose-built public playhouses and professional playwrights were a new phenomenon. The exhibition shows how the playhouse informed, persuaded and provoked thought on the issues of the day, how it shaped national identity, and how it opened a window on the wider world as London's global contacts were expanding through international trade, colonisation and diplomacy. The exhibition features some 190 objects, from great paintings, rare manuscripts, maps, prints, drawings, arms and armour, to modest, everyday items of the time.

Robert Farquhar's Kissing Sid James, charting a potentially Donald McGill style weekend at the seaside for a croupier and a stationery salesman, with Charlotte McKinney and Alan Drake, directed by Jason Lawson, will open at the Jermyn Street Theatre, off Piccadilly on 5th September, produced by Hillscape Productions

The autumn season at the Queen's Theatre in Hornchurch will include Return To The Forbidden Planet, adapted from the 1957 sci-fi film that relocated the plot of Shakespeare's The Tempest in outer space, and packed with 1950s rock'n'roll classics, written and directed by Bob Carlton, from 25th August; John Godber and Jane Thornton's Shakers, a comedy about the waitresses in a cocktail bar, from 28th September; Arthur Conan Doyle's The Hound Of The Baskervilles, in a comedy adaptation by Steven Canny and John Nicholson of a Sherlock Holmes tale of a mysterious death involving an ancient family curse and a demonic dog, from 26th October; and Jack And The Beanstalk, by Nicholas Pegg, music and lyrics by Carol Sloman, from 1st December.

The autumn season at the New Diorama Theatre, off Euston Road, will include Friedrich Schiller's Mary Stuart, in a new version by Daniel Millar and Mark Leipacher, who also directs, about the struggle for the English throne between Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart, opening on 4th September, a Faction Theatre Company production; Georg Buchner's Woyzeck, translated, adapted and directed by Sebastian Rex, portraying the dehumanising effects of doctors, the military and women on a young man, whose fate is played out in a series of nightmarish encounters, opening on 25th September, an Acting Like Mad production; and Elena Gremina's One Hour Eighteen Minutes, the story of a Russian whistleblower about government corruption, directed by Noah Birksted-Breen, opening on 13th November, a Sputnik production.

The Rumour Machine says: that the New York Theatre Workshop production of the play with music Peter And The Starcatcher, by Rick Elice, music by Wayne Barker, adapted from Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson's 'prequel' to J M Barrie's Peter Pan, with a company of 12 portraying 50 characters, directed by Roger Rees and Alex Timbers, with musical staging by Stephen Hoggett, which is currently playing on Broadway, is West End bound. The Rumour Machine grinds on.