Jack and the Beanstalk

Jack and the Beanstalk promises all the laughter, sparkle and excitement you’ve come to expect from the seasonal show that just keeps breaking box office records!

When Jack Trott and his family find themselves down on their luck, Jack’s mother sends her poor son to market to sell their beloved cow ‘Daisy’, but when she learns that he’s exchanged the cow for a few measly beans, she’s furious and throws them out into the garden to rot.

Little does she know that those beans are magical, and when the family awake next morning and find a great beanstalk soaring high into the sky, their lives will never be the same again, for the land is ruled over by a terrifying Giant who lives in a castle high up in the clouds and, being an adventurous lad, Jack vows to climb the beanstalk and face their Fi, Fi, Foe.

Will Jack make his fortune? Will he make his Mum proud of him again? And will the family ever be reunited with poor Daisy? Find out when you join Jack and friends for ‘a tale as magic as beans’ in our sky-high Mercury pantomime.

Starring panto favourites Antony Stuart-Hicks, Dale Superville and Carli Norris (Nurse Nellie, Muddles and the Enchantress in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), and packed full of music and dancing, Jack and the Beanstalk promises to be a glittering Christmas treat for the whole family to enjoy!

Last year’s Mercury panto was nominated for no less than five Great British Panto Awards, including Best Pantomime, Best Script and Best Dame, so don’t miss out this year!

Jerusalem by Jez Butterworth

England’s green and pleasant land.

St George’s Day. It’s the day of the Flintlock Fair and the day Kennet and Avon Council want to see the back of Johnny ‘Rooster’ Byron for good. The new estate want the maverick local boy evicted, but Johnny has other plans.

At his ramshackle caravan kingdom, the charismatic hellraiser entertains his band of ‘undesirable’ scallywags with outlandish tales, unbelievable antics and an ample supply of booze and drugs. Infamous for holding the most riotous parties this side of the Wiltshire border, Johnny is a hero to many but a villain to others. Pursued by the authorities, threatened by the local thug and reprimanded by his ex, Johnny is not a man to be beaten down.

Inciting his own special brew of anarchy, Johnny fights against the hypocrisy of modern suburban life and embodies the spirit of England’s legendary giants of myth. A raucous, earthy contemporary classic, Jerusalem paints a rebellious alternative vision of the idyllic English countryside.

Following enormous success in the West End and Broadway, Jez Butterworth’s startling, multi award-winning play is brought to life in its first major revival since its London premiere.

This production contains especially strong language throughout. Age guidance 16 and upwards. Parental discretion advised.

‘A wonderful, rollicking, dark comedy about contemporary life in rural England’ Financial Times

‘Fantastic, shocking and fresh’ Daily Mail
Jerusalem in the West End, 2011.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Pity the fool who falls in love…

Following the great success of last year’s Twelfth Night and Romeo + Juliet, the Watermill Ensemble return with A Midsummer Night’s Dream, fusing actor musicianship with one of Shakespeare’s greatest comedies.

Four lovers escape the decorum of the royal courts, eluding tradition and etiquette on one fateful, intoxicating night in the Athenian woods.

Secrets, love and mistaken identities collide with a fusion of rich and beautiful music inspired by the hedonistic soulful sounds of Nina Simone and Billie Holiday.

Hermia is to be married to Demetrius.But she actually loves Lysander and after the lovers runaway to marry in secret, pursued by Demetrius, who has been told by Helena of their plan, all respectability begins to unravel.

Enter an enchanted world of dreams and passion, where the powerful spirits of a midsummer’s night will put a spell on you.

‘This highly talented company… creates many magical and inventive theatrical moments’ British Theatre Guide

‘A fresh and richly coloured take on a timeless tale’ The Stage (Romeo + Juliet)

Miss Littlewood | Sam Kenyon

Joan Littlewood was the anarchic revolutionary of 20th century theatre. Born into poverty, she raged her way to have a lasting influence on British culture. Anti-establishment, communist, visionary, rude and glorious, Joan fired the imagination of a generation. Her unique Theatre Workshop was responsible for a raft of successes including Oh What A Lovely War!, and breathed new life into the Theatre Royal Stratford East.

This new musical of Joan’s life story, told with her own uncompromising candour, reveals a mighty love story at its heart.

The Duchess of Malfi | John Webster

In an attempt to prevent the fiercely independent Duchess from marrying the man she loves, her corrupt brothers go on a disturbing quest to destroy her.

Remarkable for its inventive and grotesque violence, yet full of dark humour, this violent revenge tragedy asks how anyone can survive in a world where masculinity has become toxic.

In 2016, Director Maria Aberg’s stylish modern dress production of Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus received rave reviews and transferred to London’s Barbican in the winter. The Daily Telegraph described it as ‘pacy, eerie and full of trickery’ while The Times called it ‘soul-scouring theatre’. We are excited to welcome Maria back to tackle this gory tale of revenge in her own distinct style.

The Merry Wives of Windsor | William Shakespeare

Down on his luck in the suburbs, John Falstaff plans to hustle his way to a comfortable retirement by seducing the wives of two wealthy men. Unknown to him, it’s the women of Windsor who really pull the strings, orchestrating Falstaff’s comeuppance amidst a theatrical smorgasbord of petty rivalries, jealousies and over-inflated egos. For a fat Englishman, a Welshman and a Frenchman, the only way is Windsor…

David Troughton returns to the Company as John Falstaff, following his recent title role in Titus Andronicus and Gloucester in King Lear.

The Merry Wives of Windsor will be broadcast live to cinemas on 12 September 2018.

King Lear | William Shakespeare

King Lear has ruled for many years. As age overtakes him, he divides his kingdom amongst his children.
Misjudging their loyalty, he soon finds himself stripped of all the trappings of state, wealth and power that had defined him.

RSC Artistic Director Gregory Doran’s critically-acclaimed production returns to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre for three weeks only, with Antony Sher reprising his role as King Lear, one of the greatest parts ever written by Shakespeare.

Romeo and Juliet | William Shakespeare

What if your first true love was someone you’d been told you must hate?

Set in a world very like our own, this Romeo and Juliet is about a generation of young people born into violence and ripped apart by the bitter divisions of their parents. The most famous story of love at first sight explodes with intense passion and an irresistible desire for change, but leads all too quickly to heartbreaking consequences.

Romeo and Juliet will be broadcast live to cinemas on 18 July 2018.

Macbeth | William Shakespeare

Returning home from battle, the victorious Macbeth meets three witches on the heath. Driven by their disturbing prophecies, he sets out on the path to murder.

Our contemporary production of Shakespeare’s darkest psychological thriller marks both Christopher Eccleston’s RSC debut and the return of Niamh Cusack to the company.

The Fantastic Follies of Mrs Rich or The Beau Defeated | Mary Pix

Mrs Rich, a wealthy widow, aspires to rub shoulders with the great and good and perhaps even gain a title. Unfortunately, she’s not the only one after Sir John Roverhead!

Unlike Aphra Behn, a fellow female playwright from the late 1600s, Mary Pix has been almost lost to history. But like Behn’s The Rover, a sell-out success in early 2017, Pix’s comedy of manners combines mischief-making and mind-bending plot twists with a sharp satirical and distinctly female wit. Her colourful cast of characters dupe and dissemble as the intrigue builds. Will Mrs Rich ever squeeze her way into high society?