2017 is already shaping up to be an exciting year theatre-wise. Hamilton will be landing in London (praying to all the small gods of the theatre addicted that I manage to secure tickets), there is the heavy-weight casting for the National’s Angels in America (also on the theatre ticket securing prayer list), and a number of high profile talented theatre actors returning to the stage (including Imelda Staunton in ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf’, David Tennant in ‘Don Juan in Soho’ & Damian Lewis in ‘The Goat or Who is Sylvia’). These are all big high profile events that we can, should we want to, get excited about.
In this post I want to focus on the 7 theatre things I’m more personally interested in, some of these are possibly less obvious than others. But here goes, to my theatre addicted mind these things are well worth checking out (in no particular order):
- I’m a big Philip Ridley fan. I’m a big Jamie Lloyd fan (for those not as obsessed about theatre as I am, Philip Ridley is a playwright and Jamie Lloyd is a director). In 2017 at the Shoreditch Town Hall they are coming together for not one, but two productions. One a revival (Pitchfork Disney) and the other a brand spanking new play (Killer). Suffice it to say no paganistic praying required as I secured tickets the minute they went on sale.
- THE BUSH THEATRE IS BACK following an extensive refurbishment. I’ve missed that place and not just because it gives me an excuse to go for Polish food at the Patio before. I’m booked in for their new season and I can’t wait to check out their two re-designed spaces. I’m particularly excited about Guards at the Taj (directed by Jamie Lloyd – does he have time to sleep?) in their main space and While We’re Here in their studio space. Which brings me to reasons to be excited no 3…
- Have not one but two new Barney Norris plays to look forward to. While We’re Here at the Bush and Echo’s End at the Salisbury Playhouse (yes, I will travel for theatre). I’ve been a fan of Norris’ ever since I sobbed my heart out watching Visitors at the Bush. If you haven’t read his novel ‘Five Rivers Met on a Wooded Plain’ it is well worth checking out.
- The fabulous Andrew Keates is directing Chinglish at the Park Theatre. I know several people who caught this show while it was on in the US and they’ve given it raves, apparently it’s hilarious. This will be the European premiere and if 2017 is anything like 2016 you’ll be needing a good laugh.
- This is for any fans of Fleabag out there. This Summer the team behind Fleabag are bringing a new play called Touch to the Soho Theatre, starring the fabulous Amy Morgan (seen most recently in Travesties at the Menier). I’ve already secured my spot in the front row, I like to get up close and personal!
- Robert Icke (hugely talented ‘so hot right now’ director) is doing Hamlet at the Almeida. Remaining ticket availability for this is very limited (from a quick glance at their website there are a few nights that aren’t listed as sold out), I’m actually surprised there are any tickets left at all. It is worth knowing they keep back a small number of tickets to sell as day seats on the morning of a performance. So if you can make it to the Almeida by 11am on the day you might get lucky (the earlier you get there the luckier you are likely to be, such is the nature of queues). Please note that the popularity of this show is not just due to the fabulousness of Robert Icke, Hamlet is being played by Andrew Scott (aka Moriaty for the Sherlock fans out there).
- Another play I’m super excited about is ‘the ferryman’ at the Royal Court. Written by Jez Butterworth (Jerusalem) and directed by Sam Mendes (yeap, the big, famous film director) it is much anticipated by my fellow theatre fans. All pre-bookable tickets are sold out but you can get day tickets for Monday performances and I suspect it will be worth the effort. Or you can wait and hope for a transfer. The smart money has to be on this production popping up in the West End at some point in the not too distant future.