Cast announced for the 2019 Directors' Festival

12 July 2019

Adeyinka Akinrinade, Nicholas Armfield, Matthew Douglas, Cate Hamer, Luke MacGregor, Dylan Mason, Robert Neumark Jones, Eve Ponsonby, Gyuri Sarossy and Nathan Welsh will feature in the 2019 Directors’ Festival at the Orange Tree Theatre. The festival is a programme of four productions in repertoire from 3 – 11 August: the UK premieres of Eight Gigabytes of Hardcore Pornography written by Australia’s Declan Greene and Sadness and Joy in the Life of Giraffes written by Portugal’s Tiago Rodrigues, and revivals of The Mikvah Project written by Josh Azouz (Buggy Baby) and Pilgrims written by Elinor Cook (Out of Love).

The productions will be directed by Gianluca Lello, Ellie Goodall, Georgia Green and Wiebke Green, who have been studying on the Orange Tree Theatre and St Mary’s University MA Theatre Directing course. This is the third cohort of a unique Masters course providing the theatre directors of the future with an exciting year-long training based at the Orange Tree. It is the only course of its kind in the country to be predominantly housed within a producing theatre. Throughout the season they have assisted directors Imogen Bond, Selina Cadell, Guy Jones, Richard Twyman, Chelsea Walker, and Matthew Xia.

The productions are designed by Cory Shipp, with lighting by Chris McDonnell, Sound by Lex Kosanke, and casting by Sarah Murray.

All tickets are £10 | 2 plays for £15

Production information

THE MIKVAH PROJECT
by Josh Azouz
Directed by Georgia Green
Cast Dylan Mason and Robert Neumark Jones

Sat 3 & Thu 8 Aug at 7pm | Tue 6 & Sat 10 Aug at 9pm

Now what?
We try and part.

Eitan is 17. Avi is 35.  

Eitan loves Arsenal. Avi loves his wife. Eitan goes to college. Avi is trying for a child. 

They are in completely different places in their lives. 

Yet, every Friday, Eitan and Avi meet at the Mikvah to take part in the Jewish ritual of submerging in the water.

As they chat about life in the synagogue, football, the nature of marriage and desire they form an unexpected bond that threatens to disrupt life outside the Mikvah.

From the writer of smash hit Buggy Baby and Victoria’s Knickers, Josh Azouz’s The Mikvah Project is a play about love in impossible circumstance. 

Filled with singing and water, chutzpah and joy, we are reminded how easily a heart can break. 

Dylan Mason’s theatre includes Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Palace Theatre); 42nd Street (Theatre Royal Drury Lane); The Dog Beneath the Skin (Arcola); The Trackers of Oxyrhnynchus (Finborough); Never Let Me Go, Son of Rambow (Southampton Nuffield Theatres); The Window in the Willows (Plymouth/Salford/Southampton); Wonder.land (Theatre du Chatelet); Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Open Air Theatre); and Anything Goes (Sheffield Crucible/national tour).

Robert Neumark Jones’ theatre includes One Jewish Boy (Ed Littlewood Productions); King Arthur (Story Pocket Theatre); Bang Bang (John Cleese/Made in Colchester); The Tempest (London Theatre Workshop); and But A Dream (Sovereign Arts). TV includes Resting, Spotless, Grange Hill and Hope and Glory.

 

PILGRIMS
by Elinor Cook
Directed by Ellie Goodall
Cast Adeyinka Akinrinade, Nicholas Armfield and Luke MacGregor

Mon 5 Aug & Fri 9 Aug 9pm | Wed 7 Aug at 7pm | Sun 11 Aug 4pm

There's always a man.
Going off to war, in a ship.
In a uniform.
And there's a woman, often called Nancy.
Nancy is on the dock, looking nice, waving a handkerchief.
And she says, hang on, can't I just come with you?

Rachel wants to write about folk songs and war and women, especially their urge to escape.

Will and Dan are mountain climbers, adventurers, conquering peak after peak. 

A tale about love, adventure and betrayal. But how are stories told, and whose version is remembered? 

Award-winning playwright Elinor Cook returns to the Orange Tree, following her critically acclaimed play Out of Love in 2018. 

Adeyinka Akinrinade’s theatre credits include Tartuffe (National Theatre); Chalk Horses Might Fly (Theatre503); A Little to the Left of Centre (Full House Theatre); Riots to Revolution (Revolution); Threads (How It Ended); The Butterfly Catcher, Rip Ned (NGYT); Also By Mail (Hat Factory); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Rare Vision). TV includes Temple, Top Boy.

Nicholas Armfield’s theatre credits include Imperium Parts I & II (RSC).

Luke MacGregor’s theatre credits include Jude (Hampstead Theatre); The Winter’s Tale, Eyam (Shakespeare’s Globe); Titus Andronicus, Antony and Cleopatra, Julius Caesar (RSC/Barbican). TV includes Brave New World.

 

SADNESS AND JOY IN THE LIFE OF GIRAFFES
by Tiago Rodrigues
Translated by Mark O’Thomas
Directed by Wiebke Green
Cast Eve Ponsonby, Gyuri Sarossy and Nathan Welsh

Mon 5 & Fri 9 Aug 7pm | Wed 7 Aug 9pm | Sun 11 Aug 6pm

This is the sound of my voice in the bathroom.
This is the sound of a decision in the bathroom.

Giraffe is nine years, one month and twelve days old but she’s unusually tall for her age. Her Dad can no longer afford the Discovery Channel, so she sets out on a quest to find the money herself. Accompanied by her suicidal teddy bear Judy Garland, this unstoppable duo adventure out to solve the problems grown-ups can’t.

This is the sound of opportunity.

In a city worn down by austerity politics, this UK premiere charts one girl’s heroic journey through a chaotic adult world.

Tiago Rodrigues is the artistic director of Portugal’s Teatro Nacional D. Maria II. His plays

have been translated and performed throughout Europe and beyond, and his subversive and poetic theatre has made him one of Portugal’s leading contemporary artists.

Eve Ponsonby’s theatre credits include Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Palace Theatre); The Stepmother, If Only (Chichester Festival Theatre); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Theatre Royal Bath); Little Eyolf (Almeida Theatre); Shakespeare in Love (UK tour); ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore (Cheek By Jowl); Longing (Hampstead Theatre); Boys (Headlong); The Children’s Hour (Comedy Theatre); Prince of Denmark (National Theatre/NYT). TV includes Grantchester, Lady Chatterley’s Lover, The White Queen, Misfits, Above Suspicion. Film includes Frankenstein.

Gyuri Sarossy’s theatre credits include The Widowing of Mrs Holroyd (Orange Tree); Wendy and Peter Pan (Lyceum Edinburgh); Two Noble Kinsman, The Rover, The Seven Acts of Mercy, Romeo and Juliet (RSC); Creditors (Young Vic); The Absence of War, The Seagull (Headlong); Tonight at 8.30 (ETT/Nuffield Theatre); ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore (Cheek by Jowl); Earthquakes in London (Headlong/National Theatre); As You Like It (Royal Exchange Theatre); The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists (Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse); Macbeth (Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory/Barbican); Twelfth Night, Uncle Vanya (Donmar Warehouse). TV includes Father Brown, Press, Coroner, Foyle’s War, Einstein and Eddington, Tchaikovsky and Egypt. Film includes Mercenaries and Another Life.

Nathan Welsh’s theatre includes Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare’s Globe); The Play About My Dad (Jermyn Street Theatre); The Way of the World (Donmar Warehouse); Circa (Work Theatr/The Vaults, Waterloo). TV includes: Shetland, Trust Me, Obsession: Dark Desires, Navid and Johnny, and Living It. Film includes Days, Life Sentence and Much Ado About A Major Ting.
 

EIGHT GIGABYTES OF HARDCORE PORNOGRAPHY 
by Declan Greene
Directed by Gianluca Lello
Cast Matthew Douglas and Cate Hamer

Sat 3 & Thu 8 Aug 9pm | Tue 6 & Sat 10 Aug 7pm

Welcome to the Too-Much-Information Age. 

She’s a nurse with terrors for kids, debtors banging at the door and a shopping addiction. 

He’s in IT, bored with his lot, trapped in a soulless marriage and addicted to porn.

Miserable, both hanker for something else.

They meet online. 

No-strings sex seems like such a good idea. 

Or then again…maybe not.

The UK premiere of a comedy about lust, loneliness and hard drive 21st century dating, from the multi award-winning Australian writer Declan Greene.

Matthew Douglas’ theatre credits include Jesus Hopped the A Train (Young Vic); A Passage to India (Royal & Derngate, Northampton); An Inspector Calls (UK tour); Far from the Madding Crowd (Watermill); Cat on A Hot Tin Roof (Royal Exchange Theatre/Royal & Derngate, Northampton); The Widow of Mrs Holroyd (New Vic); The Wind in the Willows (Birmingham Rep); Travesties, The Importance of Being Earnest, Hamlet (Birmingham Rep); Salt Meets Wound (Theatre503); Hecuba (RSC); Othello (Cheek by Jowl). TV includes Outlander, Trial and Retribution, After Thomas, and The Great Escape. Film includes Miracle on the Hudson, and Papadopoulose and Sons.

Cate Hamer’s theatre credits include Kindertransport (Nottingham Playhouse); Talking Heads: Bed Among the Lentils (West Yorkshire Playhouse); Things I Know to Be True (Frantic Assembly/Lyric Hammersmith); House and Garden (Watermill); The National Joke, Just So Stories, The Swing of Things (Stephen Joseph Theatre); Abigail’s Party, Enlightenment, Suddenly Last Summer (Theatre by the Lake); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare’s Globe); Indian Ink (Southwark Playhouse). TV includes The Town, When I’m 64, The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, and Without Motive.