Westacre Theatre unveils a packed summer season

Black Voices in Red
Black Voices in Red

Westacre Theatre is presenting drama from William Shakespeare, Alan Ayckbourn and John Godber this summer – something to suit all tastes.

Aykbourn’s Relatively Speaking bursts on to the Westacre stage in late May, 50 years after it became the first West End hit for him.

Poet Wendy Cope

Poet Wendy Cope

His first play cleverly conjures laughter out of marital misery with underlying serious issues about honesty, trust and commitment.

A much-loved classic by John Godber, Bouncers –where the core characters are night club door-men – arrives with hysterical results in July.

Three other writers get their turn as well. Set in a 1964 Mother and Baby Home, Be My Baby, by Amanda Whittington, focusses on how four unmarried but pregnant young women come to terms with the shame heaped on them by a judgemental society and the dawning realisation that their babies will have to be given up for adoption.

A brilliantly-researched script about these largely secret Homes that blighted the lives of thousands, the play was a set text for GCSE English Literature.

RSC Titus Andronicus

RSC Titus Andronicus

Revived at Westacre Theatre in response to public demand is Jim Cartwright’s ‘’TWO’’.

Following the landlord and landlady of a Northern pub bickering and bantering their way through an evening, customers pull up a bar-stool and allow us a brief glimpse into their fractured lives.

Interwoven between all those performances is an absorbing new play About Love.

Adapted by Ross Chandler from a short story by Anton Chekov, it is indeed about love but also about reliability, restraint and liberty.

And Westacre Theatre has some one one-off treats lined up too.

In June, Wendy Cope reflects on life’s little irritations over a sandwich and a cuppa.

July sees three special events – the annual Summer Jazz Picnic, Black Voices In Red is the leading all-female collective in ‘a cappella singing’ performing a fusion of styles; and a Sunday afternoon recital by the Alke Quartet as part of the King’s Lynn Festival.

Shakespeare will be on the Westacre Theatre stage with a whistle-stop visit in June by the BTEC Performing Arts Students from Peterborough Regional College with The Comedy of Errors.

More Shakespeare is on live screenings through the summer from the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford.

In April, the race to claim the Empire spirals out of control in ‘’Julius Caesar’’. Following the assassination of Caesar, Mark Antony reaches the peak of power but is torn between duty and love in ‘’Antony and Cleopatra’’ - in May. August sees Shakespeare’s most bloody play in ‘’Titus Andronicus’’. ‘’Coriolanus’’ is a fearless soldier but reluctant leader at the emergence of the Republic of Rome; a head-on play about war in October.

More carefully selected screenings taking you direct into the auditoria of other famous venues. Live from the Barbican, Ivo van Hove directs Jude Law in ‘’Obsession’’ - a chilling tale of passion and destruction.

Imelda Staunton stars in Edward Albee’s landmark play ‘’Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’’ from the Harold Pinter Theatre. ‘’Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead’’ by Tom Stoppard stars Daniel Radcliffe from the Old Vic.

A wonderfully inventive version of J M Barrie’s ‘’Peter Pan’’ comes from the National Theatre, where ‘’Salome’’ changes the course of the world through her mysterious dance.

Both parts of ‘’Angels in America’’ will be broadcast on consecutive weeks in July. Billie Piper has just added to her Evening Standard Best Actress award with a much-coveted Olivier Award for her performance in ‘’Yerma’’ from the Young Vic which will be screened at Westacre Theatre in August.

The best of mainstream contemporary cinema continues to be shown on mid-week afternoons under the Wednesday Flicks banner.

In August, a free evening to meet photographer Stephen Durrant and see hundreds of his shots not included in his Gallery exhibition.

Please visit www.westacretheatre.com for more information and online booking. Or you can phone 01760 755800 for the Theatre to return your call.