A MAD WORLD OF MAD KINGS, TEETERING ON THE BRINK OF DISASTER
Richard the Lionheart is dead. His brother John is King of England. Threatened from all sides by Europe, the English noblemen and even his own family, King John will stop at nothing to keep hold of his crown.
Shakespeare’s rarely performed tale of a nation in turmoil vibrates with modern resonance in this vivid new production by Director Eleanor Rhode in her debut at the RSC.
‘I THINK I MIGHT BE DIFFERENT. I MIGHT NOT BE THE SAME’
Dennis is 12 years old and his school football team’s star striker. But when Mum leaves home, life is tough. The only reminder Dennis has of Mum is a photo of her in a beautiful yellow dress. A dress rather like the one on the cover of Vogue on sale at Raj’s newsagents. And also a bit like the one that Lisa James, the coolest girl in the school, is sketching in her note book. What do you do if you like both football and dresses? And what will Mr Hawtrey the headteacher do when he discovers that his strict uniform code has been broken by a boy in a dress?
David Walliams’ heart-warming comedy is brought to the stage for the first time in a musical with all new songs from Robbie Williams and Guy Chambers, script by former RSC playwright in residence Mark Ravenhill and in a production for all the family directed by RSC Artistic Director Gregory Doran.
Lady Brute is tired of her tedious, loveless marriage and her tedious, drunk husband. When she decides to spice up her love life with a younger man, scandal threatens to ruin her.
Phillip Breen (The Hypocrite, The Shoemaker’s Holiday, The Merry Wives of Windsor, 2012) directs Caroline Quentin (The Hypocrite, 2017), Alexandra Gilbreath (The Rover, 2016) and Jonathan Slinger (Hamlet, 2013) in this outspoken Restoration romp that shocked 17th century society.
‘BURN, BURN TO NOTHING. BUT LET VENICE BURN HOTTER THAN ALL THE REST.’
Venice is sinking.
Under the shadow of darkness, an impoverished nobleman and senator’s daughter marry in secret, and are disinherited by her oppressive father.
Discontented and vulnerable, Jaffeir is enlisted by his dear friend Pierre – a decorated and famous Venetian soldier – to join an international revolution against the leaders of their failed city state. But when a soldier from within the revolution threatens his wife Belvidera, they go on the run, and make a decision that tears their lives apart.
Prasanna Puwanarajah directs this new production of Thomas Otway’s rarely-performed Restoration political thriller: a dark masterpiece, and a breathtaking love story.
IN A REIMAGINED 1590, ENGLAND IS A MATRIARCHY.
Baptista Minola is seeking to sell off her son Katherine to the highest bidder. Cue an explosive battle of the sexes in this electrically charged love story.
Justin Audibert (Snow in Midsummer, The Jew of Malta) turns Shakespeare’s fierce, energetic comedy of gender and materialism on its head to offer a fresh perspective on its portrayal of hierarchy and power.
‘TO WHOM SHOULD I COMPLAIN?’
When a young novice nun is compromised by a corrupt official, who offers to save her brother from execution in return for sex, she has no idea where to turn for help. When she threatens to expose him, he tells her that no one would believe her.
Shakespeare wrote this play in the early 1600s, yet it remains astonishingly resonant today. Artistic Director Gregory Doran directs this new production.
LOVE IS MERELY A MADNESS.
Rosalind is banished and with her best friend, Celia by her side, she journeys to a world of exile. But not before catching the eye of love-struck Orlando who is also forced from The Court into the Forest…
What ensues is a riotous combination of a feisty cross-dressing heroine, a tartan-clad fool, melodic songs, questionable poetry and laughs aplenty. Will love conquer all, or is it merely a madness?
Kimberley Sykes (Dido, Queen of Carthage, 2017) directs this playful and passionate version of Shakespeare’s much-loved romantic comedy
MERCURY AT ABBEY FIELD
This event will take place in our new location ‘Mercury at Abbey Field’.
This is a state-of-the-art pop-up theatre that will house a limited season of shows from Autumn 2019 and is situated on Abbey Field in Colchester.
The site will be a fully enclosed and heated temporary theatre, with dedicated parking and coach drop off points and is accessible for those on foot from Circular Road East Lower.
After its second record-breaking year, the Mercury panto has been supersized to fill our new pop-up performance space. Which can only mean more glitter, glamour, songs and seats at our stunning new Abbey Field location!
‘Consider yourself one of us’ and join Colchester Operatic Society and Colchester Operatic Society Second Edition for a new and exciting venture in association with the Mercury Theatre. Celebrate as we join forces to bring you one of London’s most popular musicals Oliver! The Mercury has worked with Colchester Operatic many times in the past, but this will be the first full collaboration, combining professional creatives with local community actors and children.
Poor Oliver is stuck begging for more supper in a workhouse until he pushes his luck one too many times and is sold to a cruel undertaker. Unsurprisingly, this life proves to be just as bad, so Oliver soon escapes to London. Here, he is taken in by Fagin and the Artful Dodger who show him just how to ‘Pick a Pocket or Two’; he then meets the charming Nancy, who may turn out to be his only true friend in this wild and exciting world. But, when Oliver’s intended ‘mark’, Mr Brownlow, takes pity on the boy and offers him a new life, Fagin’s henchman Bill Sikes gets word and plots to kidnap the boy, to disastrous effect…
Book, Music and Lyrics by Lionel Bart.
This amateur production is presented by arrangement with Music Theatre International (Europe)
All authorised performance materials are also supplied by MTI Europe www.mtishows.co.uk
New York City, West Side, 1957. In the midst of gang rivalry and racial tensions, love at first sight strikes between Tony, a founding member of the White-American Jets and Maria, the sister of Bernardo, leader of the Puerto Rican Sharks. In the face of danger, the two young lovers continue to meet in secret – but the Jets and the Sharks have one last rumble to fight out.
At the outbreak of World War One, Joey, young Albert’s beloved horse, is sold to the Cavalry and shipped to France. He’s soon caught up in enemy fire, and fate takes him on an extraordinary journey, serving on both sides before finding himself alone in no man’s land. Albert, who remained on his parents’ Devon farm, cannot forget Joey. Though still not old enough to enlist he embarks on a treacherous mission to find him and bring him home.
Based on the beloved novel by Michael Morpurgo, this powerfully moving and imaginative drama, filled with stirring music and songs, is a show of phenomenal inventiveness. At its heart are astonishing life-sized horses by South Africa’s Handspring Puppet Company, who bring breathing, galloping, charging horses to thrilling life on stage.