Ahead of a short tour, pioneering theatremakers People Show bring their latest devised creation People Show 137: God Knows How Many to London’s Southwark Playhouse for a limited season from 5 to 29 February 2020, with a press night on 7 February.
1966, a Soho basement. The People Show was born. Born site-specific, immersive, screaming and always visual… With the company now archiving and reflecting on their first 50 years, they surge onwards.
From the troubadours of the Parisian boulevards of yesteryear to today’s global corporate domination, People Show 137: God Knows How Many, will take you precisely nowhere. But on the way, you will laugh, possibly cry, and feel a sense of what it is we might be doing here.
Emil Wolk, George Khan, Mark Long – People Show stalwarts – and Bill Palmer of Avanti Display, come together for a new show. Years of tumbling, verbal and musical gymnastics are taken to the next dimension. A darker dimension where the momentary nature of life is confronted and challenged.
The production has special effects design by Dr Dave Southall and Bill Palmer of Avanti Display. Maureen is voiced by Nicola Blackwell. Additional arrangements are by Nick Tigg and French radio by Fred De Faye.
Following Southwark, People Show 137: God Knows How Many tours to the Tobacco Factory in Bristol, Lancaster Arts and the Georgian Theatre Royal Richmond in Swaledale, Yorkshire.
About People Show
Formed in 1966 and acknowledged as the UK’s longest-running alternative theatre company, People Show has been creating devised performances in theatres, in telephone boxes, on streets, on water, for five decades, and its radically disruptive influence has made a major contribution to the current theatre landscape.
Today People Show are a core group of six artists – Gareth Brierley, Sadie Cook, Fiona Creese, George Khan, Mark Long and Jessica Worrall – who work together, and also independently, with a much wider network of Associate Artists who have been, and continue to be, involved with the company on a show by show basis.
What’s the thinking behind People Show’s approach? And their numerical titles? The company explains:
“Every new show we make is given a number to instigate our next creative enquiry. Creatively we are always shifting shape, actively defying definition…
“Our non-hierarchical approach to creating live performance and new theatrical work has always gone against the grain and resisted form. Unanchored by traditional theatrical structure, each of our shows becomes an expression of whatever and whoever arrives at the rehearsal room on day one of the making process. We take inspiration from everywhere, respond to the moment and never limit the scope of our ideas. Over the past 50 years, we have created devised performances in theatres, in fields, in telephone boxes, on streets, even on water.
“In a world where possibilities seem limitless but there is so much pressure on the arts, the more important preserving this creative freedom feels. Nothing is predetermined. We can’t tell programmers, press or the most important people – our audiences – what they are coming to see. It’s risky and unpredictable. But we love it and wouldn’t want to do it any other way.”
People Show 137: God Knows How Many runs from 5 to 29 February 2020 at Southwark Playhouse, 77-85 Newington Causeway, London SE1 6BD with Monday to Saturday evening performances at 8pm, with a matinee on Saturday 29 February at 3.30pm. Tickets are priced £14-22. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE!