Midsummer Mischief casting and London transfer

29 April 2014

RSC Midsummer Mischief Festival: Casting and London Transfer Details

The Other Place at The Courtyard Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon: 14 June – 12 July 2014

Royal Court Theatre, Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, London: 15 – 17 July 2014

Casting is announced for the four new plays of Midsummer Mischief - a festival inspired by the original ethos and spirit of The Other Place under the leadership of Buzz Goodbody. The plays will be performed in repertoire in a purpose-built temporary studio on the current Courtyard Theatre stage in Stratford-upon-Avon from 14 June – 12 July 2014, with a press day on the 21 June before all four plays transfer to the Royal Court Theatre, Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from the 15 – 17 July 2014. The plays are presented in two programmes:

PROGRAMME A: Directed by Erica Whyman
The Ant and the Cicada by Timberlake Wertenbaker
Revolt. She said. Revolt again by Alice Birch

PROGRAMME B: Directed by Jo McInnes
I can hear you by E. V. Crowe
This is not an exit by Abi Zakarian

The productions will be cross cast. The cast includes Robert Boulter, recognised for his recurring role in Casualty and theatre credits including Herons (Royal Court) and Mercury Fur (Paines Plough). John Bowe, most well-known for his TV roles in Prime Suspect, Coronation Street and Cranford and West End roles in Priscilla Queen of the Desert and Sweeney Todd. Scarlett Brookes, who appeared in TV's Blackout and No Love Lost, who made her stage debut in Caryl Churchill's Love and Information (Royal Court). Ruth Gemmell, known for playing the leading female role opposite Colin Firth in Fever Pitch and more recently in Channel 4's Utopia. Julie Legrand whose credits include roles in the West End productions of See How they Run, Fiddler on the Roof, Wicked and The Wizard of Oz, she was last at the RSC as the Nurse in the touring production of Romeo and Juliet. Mimi Ndiweni also returns to the RSC having just completed the First Encounter production of The Taming of the Shrew, which toured schools and theatres across the UK and in Ohio.

Throughout the festival in Stratford-upon-Avon, there will be a free exhibition in the foyer of The Courtyard Theatre commemorating the 40th anniversary of the opening of The Other Place. The installation will return audiences to the original spirit of The Other Place exploring Buzz Goodbody's radical work, her theatre manifesto and the reasoning behind creating a theatre in a small tin shed in 1974. There will also be a series of events running alongside the performances and exhibition:

Saturday 28 June: Making Mischief
On Saturday 28 June, people can take part in Making Mischief in Stratford-upon-Avon, a day of conversations and behind-the-scene glances at The Other Place at the Courtyard Theatre. During the morning guest speakers join the festival creative teams for panel discussions and brunch. Post show talks will take place after each performance and in the evening people can join members of the RSC band and acting company for an evening of live music and dancing.

10.45am - 11.45am: Conversation A: Gender, feminism and theatre making
Tickets: £5 
A conversation with the writers and creative teams of the festival, together with invited artists including Nic Green, who will respond to the provocations laid out by the festival. Chaired by Erica Whyman. The event will start with a presentation by Nic Green about the making of her acclaimed feminist participatory performance art piece, Trilogy.

Brunch: Tickets: £5
The cafe will serve a selection of brunch food and guest speakers and audience can continue talking over coffee.

12.15pm – 1.15pm: Conversation B: Shakespeare, gender and radical thought
Tickets: £5
Professor Ewan Fernie from the Shakespeare Institute joins Erica Whyman and the panel of artists and creatives to discuss how gender relates to Shakespeare's work.

4.15pm – 4.45pm: Free Post Show talk with Creatives and Cast of Programme A

10.15pm -10.45pm: Free Post Show talk with Creatives and Cast of Programme B

10.30pm - late: Free live music event with members of the RSC band and acting company

Booking
All tickets for Programme A or Programme B in Stratford-upon-Avon and in London are £15.

£5 tickets for 16-25s are gives access to £5 tickets for all RSC productions whether we are performing in Stratford-upon-Avon, London or on tour. Tickets can be booked in advance on the phone, online or in person with some available for sale on the day of performance. The scheme is supported by Project Partner, BP.

A full schedule for Midsummer Mischief in Stratford-upon-Avon is available here

Press performances:
Programme A: Saturday 21 June, 1.45pm
Programme B: Saturday 21 June, 7.45pm

To book tickets for the festival in Stratford-upon-Avon call 0844 800 1110 or go online

Royal Court Theatre, Jerwood Theatre Upstairs performance schedule

PROGRAMME A: Directed by Erica Whyman
The Ant and the Cicada by Timberlake Wertenbaker
Revolt. She said. Revolt again by Alice Birch
Tuesday 15 July, 7.45pm
Thursday 17 July, 1.45pm

PROGRAMME B: Directed by Jo McInnes
I can hear you by E. V. Crowe
This is not an exit by Abi Zakarian
Wednesday 16 July, 7.45pm
Thursday 17 July, 7.45pm

Tickets go on sale at the Royal Court on Wednesday 30 April to book call 020 7565 5000 or go online www.royalcourttheatre.com

Press Contact information

For further information, please contact Amy.belson@rsc.org.uk  on 01789 412622 or Philippa.harland@rsc.org.uk  on 020 7845 0512.

For press ticket requests, please contact dean.asker@rsc.org.uk   on 01789 412660

Images for media use
Media can download high res images of the playwrights by registering at www.rsc.org.uk/press-images

Notes to Editors

The Other Place
The Other Place began life as a tin shed in 1974 under the visionary leadership of its founding director, Buzz Goodbody. Over the years the studio theatre developed a distinguished reputation as a place for invention, learning and experimentation, and a home for our new work. In 2004 the theatre closed to make room for The Courtyard Theatre, the temporary auditorium which was home to the RSC during the transformation of the Royal Shakespeare and Swan theatres. With the opening of the new theatres in 2010, the 1,000 seat Courtyard Theatre is no longer required making room for the return of The Other Place on the existing footprint.

We are now in the process of raising the money needed to bring back The Other Place, designing a space that will be a unique hub for rehearsal, research, artist development, learning and creativity. It will be a home for our new work, a vibrant, creative building which embodies the challenging, alternative spirit of the original Other Place. The ambition is to open the new theatre at the end of 2015.

Buzz Goodbody
Mary Ann “Buzz” Goodbody was born in London on 25 June 1946. Educated at Roedean and Sussex University, Goodbody first joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1967 as an assistant to John Barton, who co-founded the RSC with Peter Hall in 1960. Serving as a dramaturg for Terry Hands, Goodbody became an assistant director in 1969. Her involvement in Theatregoround (TGR) – a project producing small-scale Shakespearean productions – saw her 1970 production of Arden of Faversham performed at the Roundhouse in London, in addition to a national tour of her production of King John. A feminist, Buzz was involved in the Women's Liberation movement, and in 1971 she co-founded the Women's Street Theatre Group. Her 1971 production of The Oz Trial was heavily criticised, and Buzz was labelled 'a young and militant lady director.' In 1973, she staged a modern-day, feminist interpretation of As You Like It with Eileen Atkins in the role of Rosalind. In 1974, she became an associate director at the RSC, and was instrumental in establishing The Other Place, designed to be an alternative venue challenging the RSC's programme and practice. Buzz staged King Lear (1974) and Hamlet (1975) at The Other Place. Buzz died in April 1975, shortly after her production of Hamlet had opened. Her production of Hamlet was described by Times critic Irving Wardle as 'the key classical production of the decade.' BBC critic John Elsom called her one of theatre's 'most promising directors.'

Supporters

The RSC Ensemble is generously supported by The Gatsby Charitable Foundation and The Kovner Foundation

The RSC Literary Department is generously supported by The Drue Heinz Trust

The 'Roaring Girls' season is generously supported by Miranda Curtis.

The Other Place is generously supported by The Gatsby Charitable Foundation and The Backstage Trust

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