Robert Hastie has announced Sheffield Theatres’ new season, his third as artistic director. Highlights include:
- Three world premieres: Standing at the Sky’s Edge by Michael Wynne, with music and lyrics by Richard Hawley; Steel by Chris Bush and Close Quarters by Kate Bowen
- A new production of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream directed by Robert Hastie with music by Dan Gillespie Sells
- Paul Foster’s return to Sheffield Theatres to direct this year’s Christmas musical Kiss Me, Kate
The season begins with the world première of Sheffield born playwright Chris Bush’s play Steel directed by Rebecca Frecknall (Studio, 13 September to 6 October 2018, press night is 17 September). Exploring the role of women in the Labour party over the last three decades, it asks what’s changed and what still must?
This is followed by Hastie’s new production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the Crucible 28 September to 20 October 2018 (press night is 2 October) with music by Dan Gillespie Sells who returns to Sheffield Theatres following the smash hit Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, and a second world première with Close Quarters by Kate Bowen – a taut thriller about the first generation of British women in close combat roles and looks at gender politics in the world’s most dangerous workforce (Studio, 25 October to 10 November 2018, press night is 29 October). This co-production with Out of Joint is directed by Kate Wasserberg, and is her first new play since taking over as the company’s artistic director.
Paul Foster returns to Sheffield Theatres to direct this year’s Christmas musical Kiss Me, Kate by Sam and Bella Spewack with music and lyrics by Cole Porter following the success of Annie Get Your Gun (Crucible, 7 December 2018 to 12 January 2019, press night is 12 December).
The 2019 season begins with Sheffield Theatres associate director Caroline Steinbeis’ production of Rutherford and Son, Githa Sowerby’s celebrated classic about the struggle for supremacy, legacy and deciding one’s own destiny (Crucible, 8 to 23 February 2019, press night is 12 February).
This is followed by debbie tucker green’s hang, directed by Taio Lawson, who joined Sheffield Theatres this year as resident assistant director the part of the Regional Theatre Young Director Scheme (Studio, 21 February to 9 March 2019, press night is 25 February).
The season is completed by the world premiere of Standing at the Sky’s Edge by BAFTA and Olivier Award-winning Michael Wynne, with music and lyrics by the internationally acclaimed musician Richard Hawley (Crucible, 15 March to 6 April, press night is 20 March). The production, directed by Hastie, tells the story of the first residents of Sheffield’s iconic Park Hill in a heart-swelling, heart-breaking love song to the city.
The new musical follows the success of the Sheffield Theatres production Everybody’s Talking About Jamie in 2017. The West End transfer recently extended its booking period to October 2018.
Robert Hastie said today:
“Our new season is deeply rooted in Sheffield and culminates in an exciting new musical about the iconic Park Hill estate which overlooks the theatre. I am thrilled to be directing Standing at the Sky’s Edge and to be working with Michael Wynne and Sheffield legend Richard Hawley. Together they have created a musical with a strong Sheffield heart and I can’t wait to bring it to the Crucible stage.
“My passion for new writing and our commitment to supporting emerging artists and redressing the gender balance across our work is also at the forefront of this season.”