Edinburgh Comedy Nominees 2019
A veritable smorgasbord of comedy nominees (and the winner) for you to tuck into.
All that matters is that great stories are told. Soho Theatre presents a season packed with new plays and announces its hunt for the next generation of writers. The Soho Theatre autumn theatre season for 2019 features David Baddiel’s first original stage play starring Alan Davies, the London premiere of Cora Bissett’s epic piece of gig theatre and the Edinburgh transfer of Ryan Calais Cameron’s new play starring Richard Blackwood. All following an exciting summer of debuts (Whitewash by Gabriel Bisset-Smith), West End transfers (Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s smash Fleabag) and the return of the Olivier Award winning play Flesh and Bone.
With Citysong, winner of the 2017 Verity Bargate Award, making its London premiere tonight on our main stage, it is with much excitement that Soho Theatre and Character 7 begin their search for the next extraordinary play from an extraordinary new voice for the Verity Bargate Award 2020, with judges including Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Arinze Kene, Lolita Chakrabarti and Laura Wade.
Soho Theatre’s theatre producer and newly appointed Creative Director David Luff said: “I’m extremely excited by the quality of new-writing and diversity of voices; world premieres, debut plays, Edinburgh transfers and returning Soho favourites – it’s a season of surprise and subversion. Our Associate Director Lakesha Arie-Angelo directs the brilliantly original new play Shuck ‘n’ Jive, we bring back anarchic fringe favourites Sh!t Theatre and Lucy McCormick and we’re delighted to announce the Soho debuts of Richard Blackwood in Typical and Alan Davies in David Baddiel’s superbly smart tragicomedy God’s Dice.”
Following his many appearances on stage at Soho Theatre and his Olivier-nominated show My Family: Not the Sitcom, Soho Theatre and Avalon present David Baddiel’s first original stage play God’s Dice, a tragicomedy about the power of belief and our quest for truth in a fractured world directed by James Grieve and starring Alan Davies (Jonathan Creek, QI).
After an award-winning world premiere run at the Traverse Theatre What Girls Are Made Of, written and performed by Cora Bissett, has its London premiere at Soho Theatre. Directed by Orla O’Loughlin, Cora’s rollercoaster journey from Fife schoolgirl to indie rock star celebrates the euphoric highs and epic shitstorms of her young life with the personal losses and gains of her adult life. Cora returns to Soho Theatre for the first time since the critically acclaimed romantic comedy Midsummer (a Play with Songs).
With music, laughter and searing honesty comes Shuck ‘n’ Jive, the debut play by Cassiopeia Berkeley-Agyepong and Simone Ibbett-Brown, directed by Soho Theatre Associate Director Lakesha Arie-Angelo. Desperate to be seen as they are, not as the colour of their skin, Cassi and Simone decide to seize back control and write their own play. This is that play.
A devastatingly powerful new play by award-winning writer Ryan Calais Cameron, Typical uncovers the man and the humanity behind the tragic real-life story of Christopher Alder. Starring Richard Blackwood (EastEnders) and from Nouveau Riche, the makers of the award-winning 2018 hit Queens of Sheba, with Soho Theatre and HOME, Manchester, supported by Talawa and tiata fahodzi. Directed by Anastasia Osei-Kuffour.
From our small island in the sea, to Malta, another small island in the sea Sh!t Theatre Drink Rum with Expats find mystery and murder in the fight to be European. Following its premiere this year at the Edinburgh festival, Soho Theatre in association with Show and Tell present a playful and political show about Europe by Sh!t Theatre’s Becca and Louise, with Soho Theatre Associate Director Adam Brace as direc-turg and Nala the dog.
Our autumn season rounds off with another festival show – the Edinburgh transfer of Lucy McCormick’s brand-new show, Post Popular. Join Lucy in a late-night crawl through the annals of history in this enthusiastically humiliating exploration of power and purpose. Featuring friends-with-benefits Samir and Ted and directed by Ursula Martinez, produced by Soho Theatre, Johnson & Mackay and United Agents.
And finally, the search is on. Soho Theatre and Character 7, producer of The Night Manager, are looking for extraordinary plays from extraordinary new voices. It doesn’t matter how old you are, where you’re from or what you do. If you’ve never written before, that’s fine too. What matters is that great stories are told – human, inspiring and urgent stories which can only exist in this moment. The Verity Bargate Award is Soho Theatre’s flagship new-writing award with the winning play produced in a full production on our stages. The Verity Bargate Award has helped launch the careers of some of Britain’s most established playwrights and screenwriters, including Matt Charman (Bridge of Spies), Vicky Jones (Run for HBO) and Toby Whithouse (Doctor Who).
Judges for Verity Bargate Award 2020 include Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Arinze Kene, Lolita Chakrabarti and Laura Wade with more to be announced. The Verity Bargate Award is open to any playwright who has had fewer than three professional productions and lives in the UK or Ireland, submissions will open between 20 November to 20 December this year and the winner will be announced as part of Soho Theatre’s 20th anniversary on Dean Street. Soho Theatre will present a series of workshops and information sessions in Dean Street and around the UK and Ireland in the lead up to submissions opening. All that matters is that great stories are told.
Tickets for all shows announced are on sale now to Soho Theatre Friends, on sale to Soho Theatre Members from 12 noon Friday 14 June, and on general sale from 12 noon next Monday 17 June.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
Kelly Fogarty / PR & Events Director / firstname.lastname@example.org / 020 7478 0132 / 0744 605 1466
Georgia Young / Press Officer / email@example.com / 020 7478 0142
NOTES TO EDITORS
SOHO THEATRE is London’s most vibrant venue for new theatre, comedy and cabaret with a national and international touring programme, a digital presence and an additional venue in Walthamstow. As entrepreneurial as it is innovative, under the leadership of Executive Director Mark Godfrey and Creative Director David Luff, the charity and social enterprise’s mission is to produce new work, discover and nurture new writers and artists, and target and develop new audiences. Soho Theatre works with artists in a variety of ways, from full producing of new plays, to co-producing new work, alongside working with associate artists and presenting the best new emerging theatre companies. Soho Theatre have numerous artists on attachment and under commission, including Soho Six and a thriving Young Company of writers and comedy groups, and presents two new writing Awards, the Verity Bargate Award and the Tony Craze Award. sohotheatre.com | www.sohotheatreondemand.com | @sohotheatre
Francesca Moody Productions and Soho Theatre Present
By Gabriel Bisset-Smith
Directed by Charlotte Bennett
Wed 3 – Sat 27 Jul, 7pm/ matinees 1.15pm and 2.30pm
Tickets from £11
From BAFTA Nominated writer Gabriel Bisset-Smith comes a hilarious, devastating and timely world premiere; a love letter to London exploring race, family and where the hell all the good night clubs have gone. It’s hard parenting a child that everyone thinks you’ve kidnapped. Spanning 30 years, from Jamaica to London, Whitewash is the story of Mary and Lysander, a mixed-race woman and her very white son. When Lysander tries to redevelop the housing estate Mary brought him up on he believes he’s helping, but is he really just trying to erase his past? Inspired by Gabriel’s own experience, this hilarious and devastating new play is an exploration of the intersection between race and class, identity and belonging. Who are you when you don’t look like your own family and no longer recognise the changing city around you?
Soho Theatre presents the Unpolished Theatre production of
FLESH & BONE
Monday 8 – Saturday 13 July. Evenings 7.15pm, matinee 3pm.
Tickets from £10
The Olivier Award-winning production returns to Soho Theatre for a limited run. Flesh & Bone gives the gritty residents of an East London Tower Block, that is due for demolition, a stage. Through their wickedly eloquent voices we are thrust into their stories, held by the scruff of the neck, and made to listen.
Drywrite, Soho Theatre, and Annapurna Theatre Present
Written and performed by Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Soho Elsewhere – Wyndham’s Theatre
Tue 20 Aug – Sat 14, 7.30pm matinees 4pm
Tickets from £25
The critically acclaimed multi award winning production comes to the West End this summer for its last ever run. Following a sold-out run in New York, Fleabag, Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s award-winning comedic play, directed by Vicky Jones, comes home to London for 30 performances only. The play that inspired the hit television series, Fleabag is a rip-roaring look at some sort of woman living her sort of life. Fleabag may seem oversexed, emotionally unfiltered and self-obsessed, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. With family and friendships under strain and a guinea pig café struggling to keep afloat, Fleabag suddenly finds herself with nothing to lose.
Nouveau Riche in association with Soho Theatre and HOME, Manchester, supported by Talawa and tiata fahodzi present
By Ryan Calais Cameron
Directed by Anastasia Osei-Kuffour
Starring Richard Blackwood
Soho Theatre Upstairs. Tuesday 3 – Saturday 28 September. Evenings 7.15pm, matinees 2.45pm.
Press Night: Thursday 5 September. Tickets from £11
What is the cost of a typical night out? An ex-serviceman who has spent his life fighting for his country finds new battles in a society fighting against him. From the makers of 2018 hit Queens of Sheba comes this powerful new play by Ryan Calais Cameron. Typical uncovers the man and the humanity behind a tragic real-life story, challenging traditional conceptions of Black manhood and highlighting the crisis of identity consuming Britain today.
Soho Theatre presents a Raw Material & Traverse Theatre Company co-production in association with Regular Music
WHAT GIRLS ARE MADE OF
Written and performed by Cora Bissett.
Directed by Orla O’Loughlin.
Soho Theatre. Monday 9 – Saturday 28 September. Evenings 7pm. Tickets from £10
Twenty-five years ago, a small town girl from Fife was catapulted to a rockstar life as the lead singer of a hot new indie band. On tour with Radiohead, partying with Blur and sharing a dressing room with the Cranberries, she was living the dream. Until she wasn’t. Based on her meticulously detailed teenage diaries, this is the true story of Cora Bissett’s rollercoaster journey from the girl she was to the woman she wanted to be. Performing with a live band Cora celebrates life’s euphoric highs and epic shitstorms, and asks what wisdom we should pass on to the next generation – and which glorious mistakes we should let them make.
Soho Theatre presents
SHUCK ’N’ JIVE
By Cassiopeia Berkeley-Agyepong and Simone Ibbett-Brown
Directed by Lakesha Arie-Angelo
Soho Theatre Upstairs. Wednesday 2 – Saturday 26 October. Evenings 7pm, matinees 2.45pm.
Press night Friday 4 October. Tickets from £11
Opera singer Simone very quickly discovered that London was not the BNP-free utopia she’d always dreamed of. Meanwhile, actress Cassi is bored battling it out for the illustrious roles of Sassy Friend, Spunky Slave, and Third Crack Whore From The Left at every audition. Desperate to be seen as they are, not as the colour of their skin, they decide to seize back control and write their own play. [This is that play].
Soho Theatre in association with Show and Tell present
SH!T THEATRE: DRINK RUM WITH EXPATS
direc-turg – Adam Brace
Tuesday 8 – Saturday 19 October. Evenings 7.15pm, matinees 2.30pm. Press night Thursday 10 October. Tickets from £10
Celebrating their final year as Europeans, island-monkeys Becca and Louise got invited to the 2018 European Capital of Culture in Malta, having missed out on Hull last year. They went to drink rum with Brits abroad but found a lot more than they expected. Lads on tour, ‘the rising stars of performance art’ (Telegraph) Sh!t Theatre want to talk about home, your home, what we are doing in your home, what you might be doing in our home and how cheap the beers are. From our small island in the sea to another small island in the sea, Sh!t Theatre found mystery and murder in the fight to be European.
Soho Theatre and Avalon present
By David Baddiel
Directed by James Grieve
Starring Alan Davies
Thursday 24 October – Saturday 30 November. Evenings 7.15pm, Matinees 2.30pm. Tickets from £10
What would happen if someone was able to prove, scientifically, the existence of God? When Edie, a student in university lecturer Henry Brook’s physics class, seems to do exactly that, his universe – including his marriage to celebrity atheist author Virginia – is rocked. Science and religion go head-to-head in a ferociously funny battle for power, sex, fame and followers. David Baddiel’s debut play starring Alan Davies is an electric tragicomedy about the power of belief and our quest for truth in a fractured world.
Soho Theatre, Johnson & Mackay and United Agents present
LUCY MCCORMICK: POST POPULAR
Directed by Ursula Martinez
Tuesday 3 – Saturday 14 December, 8.30pm. Tickets from £10
Following her genre-defying smash-hit, Triple Threat, Lucy McCormick is back to crawl through the annals of history in this enthusiastically humiliating exploration of power and purpose. Joined by friends with benefits, Samir Kennedy and Ted Rodgers, and directed by Ursula Martinez, Lucy is back with her trademark concoction of dance, song, absurdist art and minor breakdowns.
VERITY BARGATE AWARD 2020
The search is on. Soho Theatre and Character 7, producer of The Night Manager, are looking for extraordinary plays from extraordinary new voices. The Verity Bargate Award is Soho Theatre’s flagship new-writing award with the winning play produced in a full production on our stages. For almost 50 years, Soho Theatre has championed new writing. Since 1982, the Verity Bargate Award, Soho Theatre’s playwriting award, has uncovered the best new and emerging writers. It has launched the careers of some of Britain’s most established playwrights and screenwriters including Matt Charman (Bridge of Spies), Vicky Jones (Run for HBO), Toby Whithouse (Doctor Who) and many, many more.
The Verity Bargate Award is open to any playwright who has had fewer than three professional productions and who lives in the UK or Ireland. There are no restrictions on subject matter. Musicals and other forms of theatre are welcome but will only be judged on the text that is submitted. The winner receives £7,500 in respect of an exclusive option for Soho Theatre to produce the play.
Soho Theatre is presenting a series of workshops and information sessions at Soho Theatre and around the UK and Ireland for emerging writers interested in entering the competition. Visit our website as a full list of events is confirmed. www.sohotheatre.com/writers/verity-bargate-award/ | www.characterseven.com/