FEATURED: Birmingham Repertory Theatre Announces Its 2019 Autumn Season

Birmingham Repertory Theatre Announces Its 2019 Autumn Season


  The Birmingham Repertory Theatre (REP) are delighted to announce their 2019 Autumn and Winter Season.


  Following a sold-out run at London’s Hampstead Theatre, the astonishing true story of the man who made Hollywood’s greatest divas beautiful comes to the REP from 4th to 12th October.

‘The legendary Jack Cardiff has retired to the sleepy village of Denham, Buckinghamshire. His days of hard work – and play – on some of the most famous film sets in the world are now long behind him, as are his secret liaisons with some of the most famous women in the world. Surrounded by memorabilia from a lifetime of ‘painting with light’, the writing of an autobiography should be an easy matter – were it not that Jack would now rather live in the past than remember it’.

  Written and directed by Terry Johnson, ‘Prism’ is “magnetic” (The Guardian), “perfect” (The Times) and “glorious”, (Mail on Sunday) a delightfully witty and poignant play based on the extraordinary life of double Oscar-winning cinematic master Jack Cardiff – “the man who made women look beautiful” (Vanity Fair).

  Multi- award winning Johnson’s previous hits include ‘Hysteria’, ‘La Cage aux Folles’, ‘Mrs Henderson Presents’ and ‘Dead Funny’.

  Double Olivier Award-winner Robert Lindsay stars. Theatre credits include ‘Dirty Rotten Scoundrels’ (West End) and ‘The Entertainer’ (Old Vic Theatre); television credits include ‘My Family’ and ‘Genius’.

  ‘Prism’ features design by Tim Shortall, lighting design by Ben Ormerod, video design by Ian William Galloway, sound by John Leonard and music by Colin Towns.

  Presented by Birmingham Repertory Theatre in association with Hampstead Theatre, the commissioning of ‘Prism’ was funded by NEXT DECADE, a joint Hampstead Theatre/AKO Foundation initiative.

  ‘Prism‘ runs at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The House from 4th to 12th October.




  Robin French (BBC’s Cuckoo) brings his new play ‘Rebel Music’ to the Rep from 19th September to 5th October.

‘It’s the sweltering hot summer of 1976. The country is in economic turmoil. The far right is on the march. Rock Against Racism puts white punk bands and black reggae bands on the same bill – determined to win the culture war and defeat the National Front.

Three teenage music fans, Denise, Trudi and Andrew, join the fight for the soul of working class Britain. The trio navigate racial politics and social upheaval in Birmingham alongside their own turbulent teenage years. Can their friendship survive?’

  Supported by The Sir Barry Jackson Trust, the production will feature direction from co-creator Alex Brown, sound design by James Frewer and movement direction from Lucy Wild.

  A celebration of the diverse musical legacy of the Midlands harnessing the raw power of a concert, ‘Rebel Music’ is a raucous celebration of people power, set to a soundtrack of Punk, Reggae and 2Tone.

  ‘Rebel Music‘ runs at Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The Door from 19th September to 5th October.

‘Join the rebellion’.


Rebel Music


  The REP welcomes the return of Melly Still’s uplifting and heartbreaking staging of Alice Sebold’s ‘The Lovely Bones‘, which is back by popular demand.

‘Susie Salmon is just like any other young girl. She wants to be beautiful, adores her charm bracelet and has a crush on a boy from school. There’s one big difference though – Susie is dead.

Now she can only observe while her family manage their grief in their different ways. Her father, Jack is obsessed with identifying the killer. Her mother, Abigail is desperate to create a different life for herself. And her sister, Lindsey is discovering the opposite sex with experiences that Susie will never know. Susie is desperate to help them and there might be a way of reaching them…’

  Alice Sebold’s novel ‘The Lovely Bones’ is a unique coming-of-age tale that captured the hearts of readers throughout the world. With a cast of thirteen talented actors, incredible set design and a soundtrack combining 70’s favourites with original music, this wonderfully creative production brings her vision to life in an exciting, emotional and uplifting theatrical experience.

  The production features design by Ana Inés Jabares-Pita, composition by Dave Price, lighting design by Matt Haskins, sound design by Helen Skiera and movement direction by Mike Ashcroft, and has been adapted for the stage by Bryony Lavery.

  ‘The Lovely Bones’ will run at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The House from 6th to 21st September.


The Lovely Bones


  Returning to the REP after 11 years is J. B. Priestley’s classic thriller, ‘An Inspector Calls’.

‘When Inspector Goole arrives unexpectedly at the prosperous Birling family home, their peaceful dinner party is shattered by his investigations into the death of a young woman. His startling revelations shake the very foundations of their lives and challenge us all to examine our consciences’.

  Hailed as the theatrical event of its generation and winning more awards than any other production in history, Stephen Daldry‘s multi award-winning production of this classic thriller has enthralled more than 4 million people worldwide.

  More relevant now than ever, this is a must-see for a whole new generation of theatregoers.

  ‘An Inspector Calls‘ will run at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The House from 12th to 16th November.


An Inspector Calls


  Following two sell-out runs at the National Theatre and a world tour, Inua Ellams‘ acclaimed ‘Barber Shop Chronicles‘ comes to the REP from 26th to 28th September.

‘Newsroom, political platform, local hotspot, confession box, preacher-pulpit and football stadium. For generations, African men have gathered in barber shops to discuss the world. These are places where the banter can be barbed and the truth is always telling’.

  Directed by Olivier Award-winning director Bijan Sheibani, designed by Rae Smith (War Horse) and presented by Fuel, National Theatre and Leeds Playhouse, ‘Barber Shop Chronicles’ is a heart-warming, hilarious and insightful new play that leaps from a barber shop in Peckham to Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos and Accra over the course of a single day.

  ‘Barbershop Chronicles‘ will run at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The House from 26th to 28th September.


Barbershop Chronicles


  A season highlight is set to include an adaptation like no other. Drawing on over two-hundred years of romantic pop history is Blood of the Young‘s unique take on a beloved novel – the highly acclaimed ‘Pride And Prejudice* (*Sort of)‘.

‘Six young women have a story to tell. You might have seen them, emptying the chamber pots and sweeping ash from the grate; the overlooked and the undervalued making sure those above stairs find their happy ending. Of course, they’ve always been running the show – after all ‘You can’t have a whirlwind romance without clean bedding’ – but tonight, the servants are also playing every part’.

Presented in association with Bristol Old Vic, Northern Stage, Oxford Playhouse and Nuffield Southampton Theatres, the production will feature directed from Paul Brotherston, design by Ana Inés Jabares-Pita, lighting design by Simon Hayes, sound design by MJ McCarthy, movement direction by Emily-Jane Boyle and dramaturgy by Johnny McKnight, and is written by Isobel McArthur after Jane Austen.

Pride and Prejudice* (*Sort of)‘ will run at Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The House from 15th October to 2nd November.

‘Men, money and microphones will be fought over in this loving and irreverent all-female adaptation of Jane Austen’s unrivalled literary classic. Let the ruthless match-making begin’.


Pride And Prejudice* (*Sort of)


  Stirring stories of women of retirement age shine through in ‘Prime Time‘.

  Written by Maeve Clarke, Rachael Mainwaring & Rochi Rampal and presented by Women and Theatre, in association with Birmingham Repertory Theatre the production, which comprises of three monologues by the three different playwrights, is a funny, moving and intimate production exploring wide ranging experiences of women of retirement age.

‘Developed through research, Prime Time reflects upon how women’s professional and personal lives have impacted on their current choices or lack of them and explores the deep-rooted gender issues that this stage of our lives often exposes’.

  ‘Prime Time’ is the third collaboration between the REP and Women & Theatre, exploring themes of women and work following the success of ‘For The Past 30 Years‘ in 2014 and ‘Starting Out‘ in 2016.

  Featuring Janice Connolly with further casting to be announced, ‘Prime Time’ will run at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The Door from 23rd to 26th October.


Prime Time


  The REP are thrilled to present award-winning playwright Winsome Pinnock’s reimagining of ‘One Under‘, directed by the REP’s newly appointed Deputy Artistic Director, Amit Sharma.

‘When a young man jumps in front of a train Cyrus is driving, the mysterious circumstances prompt him to search for answers. In pursuing the truth of Sonny’s final hours, Cyrus is led to launderette worker Christine, as the past begins to catch up with people whose lives are changed forever’.

  This evocative play about the power of guilt and the quest for atonement explores the fragility of human relationships.

  A Graeae & Theatre Royal Plymouth production, commissioned by Ramps on the Moon and presented in association with Curve, the production, which runs from 19th to 23rd November, features creative captioning and audio description.


One Under


  Rifco Theatre Company (Pyar Actually) bring the world première of heart-warming new play ‘Mushy – Lyrically Speaking’, written by Pravesh Kumar (Laila The Musical, The Deranged Marriage) and infused with rap and lyrics by award-winning British rapper Raxstar (Keep It Undercover).

‘Dewsbury, 2013. Mushy, a young man with a debilitating stammer, finds himself at the centre of a television documentary. In a moment of inspiration from his teacher, Mr. Burton, he starts to find a rhythm in his voice through music. Social media erupts hailing it a miracle cure and both teacher and pupil become overnight celebrities. But Mushy’s journey to find his voice has only just begun…’

  An uplifting tale inspired by the true story of Musharaf Asghar (Educating Yorkshire), the production features a book by Pravesh Kumar, lyrics by Raxstar, direction by Ameet Chana, design by Eleanor Bull, lighting design by Robbie Butler, composition and sound design by Arun Ghosh.

  ‘Mushy – Lyrically Speaking’ will run at Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The Studio from 26th to 28th September.


Mushy – Lyrically Speaking


  This November, Hanif Kureishi‘s iconic and Oscar-nominated screenplay ‘My Beautiful Laundrette’ comes to the stage. This bold new drama will be presented against a funky backdrop of 80’s music and culture and explores cultural conflict, gender equality, class and generational strife.

‘Set in London during the Thatcher years, ‘My Beautiful Laundrette’ tells the story of young British Pakistani, Omar, who transforms his uncle’s run-down laundrette into a thriving business. After being confronted by a fascist gang, Omar recognises school-friend Johnny and uses their history to diffuse the situation. As they renovate the laundrette together, love blossoms between them. This culture clash comedy is also a subversive work of social realism, sprinkled with magic and joy running through the rich veins of Kureishi’s writing’.

  A Curve, Belgrade Theatre (Coventry), Everyman Theatre (Cheltenham) and Leeds Playhouse co-production, directed by Nikolai Foster, the production features design by Grace Smart, lighting design by Ben Cracknell, sound design by Tom Marshall, fight direction by Kevin McCurdy and casting by Kay Magson.

  ‘My Beautiful Laundrette‘ runs at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The House from 5th to 9th November.


My Beautiful Laundrette


  As previously announced, director Liam Steel returns for a second festive season at the REP with a spectacular, swashbuckling take on well-loved classic, ‘Peter Pan‘.

‘One night, the headstrong Wendy Darling is visited by a mysterious boy floating outside her window. The mischievous stranger introduces himself as Peter Pan and after teaching Wendy and her two brothers to fly, invites them on a quest to an enchanted island called Neverland. It is a world of feisty fairies, malevolent mermaids and a raucous gang of abandoned Lost Children.

But a crew of ruthless pirates, led by the dastardly and vengeful Captain Hook, also await in Neverland. Can Wendy, Peter, and his gang unite to win the day as they cross paths and swords with the pirates? And will Wendy and her brothers ever find their way back home?’

  Filled with swashbuckling adventure, the eternal classic ‘Peter Pan’ has enthralled audiences across generations. Liam Steel returns to direct after his highly acclaimed retelling of ‘The Wizard Of Oz‘ here last year. This striking new version for the young, young at heart and forever young is set to make you fall in love with this family favourite all over again.

  Presented by special arrangement with Samuel French Ltd, a Concord Theatricals Company, by arrangement with Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity, this take on J. M. Barrie’s classic tale will feature design by Michael Pavelka, lighting design by Lee Curran, and casting by Polly Jerrold, and will run at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The House from 30th November to 19th January.


Peter Pan


  Also returning to the REP is the delightful ‘Penguins‘ – a warm and engaging story for young audiences.

‘Roy and Silo are two male Chinstrap Penguins. Just like the other penguin pairs at Central Park Zoo, they walk, play, swim and dance together. When the duo decide to try and hatch a rock in place of an egg, they find themselves on an adventure that could mean raising a chick for real!’

  ‘Penguins’ is a unique and engaging show for children about friendship, fun, identity and the ever-changing meaning of family. This delightful new theatre and dance production is inspired by a true story reported in the New York Times that touched hearts worldwide.

  Presented by Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Cahoots NI and Prime Theatre, the production will feature direction from creator Paul bosco McEneaney, choreography by Carlos Pons Guerra, set and costume design by Sabine Dargent, lighting design by Somin Bond and composition by Garth McConaghie.

Penguins‘ will run at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre‘s The Door from 4th to 14th December.




  Priority booking for the new season is currently open to members, with general booking opening on Wednesday 1st May.


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