We’re delighted to announce our unprecedented Spring Season for 2024, with a large-scale smash-hit musical, five new national partnerships
and continued support of Ipswich’s emerging talent!
Musical theatre fans will be delighted as the New Wolsey Theatre, Octagon Theatre Bolton, Hull Truck Theatre and Theatre By The Lake present Howard Ashman and Alan Menken’s smash-hit mean green monster musical Little Shop of Horrors from 1-23 March. This brand-new production of the Broadway and Hollywood sci-fi smash musical premieres at the New Wolsey Theatre prior to a national tour, promising a toe-tapping and deviously delicious night out.
The New Wolsey Spring Season goes on general sale at 10am Saturday 11 November 2023 with opportunities for members, schools, season ticket holders and groups to take advantage of priority booking from Thursday 2 November.
Romeo & Juliet, our first show of the year, will be running from 1-9 February, and will be a fast-paced, 80-minute adaptation of Shakespeare’s immortal classic. This pacy and inventive production, directed by our Chief Executive/Artistic Director, Douglas Rintoul, is specially created for students and teachers of English and Drama, and anyone new to the play, and will be performed by the best emerging talent from Ipswich and the wider region. Hare and Tortoise will tour primary schools across Suffolk in early Spring 2024 and for some young people, it will be their first engagement with theatre. The adaptation of Aesop’s fable by the award-winning Brendan Murray focuses on themes of friendship and difference and looks at climate change and its impact on the natural world. The show supports the teaching of elements of the Key Stage 1 and 2 science curriculum and PHSE (Personal, Social, and Health Education) and comes with a free teachers pack that contains practical drama exercises and suggestions on how the young people can engage with nature.
We’re also incredibly to announce the world premiere of Bindweed, written by Ipswich’s award-winning playwright and Associate Artist of the New Wolsey, Martha Loader. Running from 28-29 June, this thrilling, shattering and darkly funny new play is a co-production between The New Wolsey Theatre, Colchester Mercury Theatre and High Tide, and in association with The Royal Exchange Theatre. The play delves into the lives of four men convicted of domestic abuse offences who gather each week for a perpetrator program. However, as Jen, the new group facilitator, begins to make headway within the group, the outside world starts to unravel. Martha Loader interviewed and worked with clients and communities from Ipswich to create Bindweed.
Building on the venue’s commitment to companies that make accessible work, award-winning full-mask maestros Vamos Theatre, in a co-commission with London International Mime Festival and a co-production with the New Wolsey Theatre, presents Boy On The Roof from 13-14 February. The production tells the story of a cross-generational friendship which is performed without words, and created through Community Conversations across the UK, gathering people’s experiences of ADHD, loneliness, aging, hearing loss, connection and community.
The Spring season’s vibrant selection of visiting shows from across the UK include comedy, music and thought-provoking drama such as Scratchwork Theatre’s Hags – A Musical Extravaganza, La Navet Bete’s King Arthur, Spies Like Us’ Speed Dial, Stan’s Cafe’s Community Service, Eastern Angle’s Stones In His Pockets, New Old Friends’ Houdini’s Greatest Escape, Simple 8’s Moby Dick and London Classic Theatre’s What The Butler Saw as well as family shows Dear Zoo and Gruffalo’s Child.
Making the New Wolsey Theatre’s programme accessible to as wide an audience as possible, the season will include relaxed performances, touch tours, audio described, BSL interpreted and captioned performances as well as options to watch performances via livestream.
Before Spring arrives though, our ever-popular Rock ’n’ Roll pantomime returns with Dick Whittington and His Cat (23 November – 20 January 2024) to brighten up the winter months! This new version of the family-favourite is written by award-winning comedian, writer and composer, Vikki Stone.
Book online for the pantomime and for our Spring Season 2024 shows at wolseytheatre.co.uk, or call the Box Office on 01473 295900.
Little Shop Of Horrors – Book and lyrics by Howard Ashman, music by Alan Menken. Based on the film by Roger Corman, Screenplay by Charles Griffith. Originally produced by the WPA Theatre (Kyle Renick, Producing Director). Originally produced at the Orpheum Theatre, New York City by the WPA Theatre, David Geffen, Cameron Mackintosh and the Shubert Organization. Presented by arrangement with Music Theatre International
Little Shop Of Horrors was originally directed by Howard Ashman with Musical Staging by Edie Cowan.