Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Cast Announced For Communicating Doors

The cast for the Menier Chocolate Factory's revival of Alan Ayckbourn's Communicating Doors has been announced.
Rachel Tucker will play the dominatrix Poopay who finds herself 20 years back in time when she tries to escape the psychotic Julian (David Bamber) through a hotel's communicating door.
Other casting includes Matthew Cottle, recently seen to much acclaim in the National Theatre's revival of Ayckbourn's A Small Family Business and who has frequently worked with the playwright, as Harold; Imogen Stubbs as Ruella; Lucy Briggs-Owen as Jessica. Casting for Reece has not yet been confirmed.
The production will be directed by Lindsay Posner, who directed the revival of Relatively Speaking starring Felicity Kendal and Kara Tointon which transferred into the West End in 2013.
Communicating Doors premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre In The Round, Scarborough in 1994 before opening at the Gielgud in London in 1995, where it was nominated for an Oliver Award for Best Comedy.
Communicating Doors can be seen at the Menier Chocolate Factory, London, from 7 May - 27 June 2015 and tickets are now available. For further details and booking, visit the Menier Chocolate Factory website here.
Further details about the play can be found at Alan Ayckbourn's Official Website here.

Monday, March 23, 2015

This Week: 23 March

This Week & Coming Soon
11 April: The Norman Conquests trilogy (1977 television adaptation) at the British Film Institute, London.

News Round Up:
> The Stephen Joseph Theatre's Executive Director Stephen Wood is to leave the venue. Stephen is closely associated with Alan Ayckbourn, having worked together as Artistic Director and Executive Director at the venue between 1996 and 2009 as well as when Stephen was press officer at the venue between 1976 and 1982 and whilst Alan was a company director during between 1986 and 1988 at the National Theatre - where Stephen became Head of Press. Further details including Alan's tribute can be found here.
> The final part of the new BBC Radio adaptation of Alan Ayckbourn's The Norman Conquests trilogy, Round And Round The Garden can be heard at 2.30pm on  BBC Radio 4 on Saturday 28 March. Further details can be found here.
> Booking is now open for Alan Ayckbourn's plays at the Stephen Joseph Theatre this summer with Confusions running from 9 July - 26 September and the world premiere of Hero's Welcome from 4 September - 3 October. Click here for details.
> Our sister site Scarborough In The Round continues its weekly look at the history of the Stephen Joseph Theatre as part of its 60th anniversary celebrations. Check the website's blog every Monday.

Alan Ayckbourn & The Stephen Joseph Theatre Anniversaries:
To celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Stephen Joseph Theatre in 2015, the blog will be looking back on notable dates from the history of the theatre and its relationship with Alan Ayckbourn. Visit the Scarborough In The Round blog for a more in-depth exploration of significant SJT anniversaries each week.

27 March: Alan Ayckbourn was asked tho join the board of Scarborough Theatre Trust in 1965; at that time he was working as a Radio Drama Producer for the BBC in Leeds providing occasional plays for the Library Theatre in Scarborough.
28 March: The first Intimate Exchanges 'grand marathon' began on 28 March 1983 when the Stephen Joseph Theatre In The Round, Scarborough, presented every possible permutation of the play (16 in total) during two weeks, with Alan Ayckbourn directing and starring Robin Herford and Lavinia Bertram.
29 March: London premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's Relatively Speaking at the Duke Of York's Theatre in 1967; the first transfer of a play premiered at the Library Theatre, Scarborough to the West End.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Communicating Doors & Way Upstream

As the blog reported yesterday, there are two major upcoming revivals of Alan Ayckbourn's plays in the UK.
The Menier Chocolate Factory has announced it will be reviving his Moliere Award winning and Olivier nominated thriller Communicating Doors from 7 May - 27 June.
The production is being directed by Lindsay Posner, who directed the popular 2012 touring revival of Relatively Speaking which transferred into the West End to Wyndham's Theatre in 2013.
No casting details have been announced yet, but we'll carry any news as soon as it is announced. Although this is a long run, the intimate space only seats 180 people so early booking is advised. Further details can be found here.
Chichester Festival Theatre has now announced the full company details for its anticipated revival of Way Upstream, Alan Ayckbourn's canal-set play from 1981.
Joining the already announced Sarah Parrish will be Jill Halfpenny, Jason Durr, Peter Forbes, Jason Hughes, Emily Laing and Nicola Sloane. It is being directed by Nadia Fall.
Way Upstream is running from 23 April - 16 May and further details can be found here.
Other notable upcoming Ayckbourn productions include: the current well-received production of Time Of My Life at the Tabard Theatre (running until 28 March, click here); The UK tour of Absent Friends by London Classic Theatre (running from 28 April - 18 July, click here); a rare London production of Private Fears In Public Places in the first tour by the UK's only amateur company dedicated to Alan Ayckbourn's play, Dick & Lottie, at the London Theatre, New Cross (28 July - 2 August, click here); Alan Ayckbourn's own revival of Confusions at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough (9 July - 26 September, click here) and the world premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's latest play Hero's Welcome again at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough (4 September - 3 October, click here).

Monday, March 16, 2015

This Week: 16 March 2015

This Week & Coming Soon
Until 28 March: Time Of My Life at the Tabard Theatre, Chiswick.
At cinemas now: Life Of Riley - the film by Alain Resnais based on Alan Ayckbourn's play.

News Round Up:
> Another major revival of an Alan Ayckbourn play has been announced with the Menier Chocolate Factory, London, reviving the Moliere Award winning thriller Communicating Doors from 7 May - 27 June. Click here for details. Meanwhile Chichester Festival Theatre is reviving Way Upstream from 23 April - 16 May, click here for details.
> Alan Ayckbourn will be in conversation with his biographer Paul Allen on Sunday 12 July at the Stephen Joseph Theatre as part of the venue's 60th anniversary celebrations. The event takes place at 3pm and costs £6.50 with further details available at www.sjt.uk.com.
> The new BBC Radio adaptation of Alan Ayckbourn's The Norman Conquests trilogy continues on Saturday 21 March at 2.30pm on BBC Radio 4. Directed by Peter Kavanagh, it stars Julian Rhind-Tutt, Helen Baxendale, Nigel Planer, Jeff Rawle, Clare Lawrence-Moody, Tracy-Ann Oberman.
> The Blu-ray / DVD release of Alain Resnais's final film Life Of Riley - based on Alan Ayckbourn's play - is set for 25 May in the UK and details can be found here. It is already available in North America.
> Booking is now open for Alan Ayckbourn's plays at the Stephen Joseph Theatre during its 60th anniversary celebration season. He is directing a revival of Confusions (9 July - 26 September) and the world premiere of his new play Hero's Welcome (4 September - 3 October). Click here for details.
> Our sister site Scarborough In The Round continues its weekly look at the history of the Stephen Joseph Theatre as part of its 60th anniversary celebrations. Check the website's blog every Monday.