The producers of The Buskers Opera, a brand new musical by Dougal Irvine (Departure Lounge, Laila, Britain’s Got Bhangra) and Park Theatre have today announced the first ever ‘relaxed’ performance at Park Theatre, to take place on Thursday 2nd June 2016.
The Producers of the show have launched a unique crowdfunding scheme in order help deliver this relaxed performance alongside their Arts Matter – Pass It On ticketing scheme, which will see at least a hundred tickets a week distributed to charities, youth groups and outreach programmes in the local area and around London. The Buskers Opera opens at Park Theatre on 28th April and plays until 4th June, with a press night on 5th May 2016 – the date of London’s mayoral election.
Producer Michael Peavoy said, “Very early on in the early development stages of The Buskers Opera it was clear that a piece of theatre about society, that asked questions of us all and how we operate, had to involve everybody. I knew we had to make sure that all felt welcome to take part in that conversation and question with us regardless of their personal or financial circumstance.
Four years on, we hope we’re now making small steps toward achieving that goal. If we manage to get even a handful of people in to the theatre that otherwise wouldn’t have come, and we can give them a top class show that makes them think about the world, or even forget about the world for a few moments – then we’ll have done our job. Theatre is an incredibly powerful thing, that’s why we believe wholeheartedly that art matters and the best thing we can do is to pass it on. Hopefully there are enough people out there that will agree with us, get involved with our crowdfunding efforts and help us pass on some tickets, and come along to enjoy the show.”
Musical theatre legend David Burt –the original ‘Enjolras’ in Les Miserables in 1985 – joins the cast as ‘Jeremiah Peachum’, alongside comedian Simon Dylan-Kane (known for regular appearances on Radio 4’s John Finnemore’s Souvenir Programme), who’ll play ‘Mayor Lockitt’.
David and Simon will complete a line-up of British musical theatre talent including Olivier Award-winning George Maguire (Best Supporting Actor in a Musical Award for Sunny Afternoon) as ‘Macheath’, and Lauren Samuels (Bend it Like Beckham, Grease, We Will Rock You) as ‘Polly Peachum’. Other cast members include Natasha Cottriall (Into The Woods, Future Conditional) as ‘Lucy Lockitt’, John McCrea as ‘Filtch’, Maimuna Memon as ‘Jenny Diver / Dissenter / Beggar’, and Giovanna Ryan as ‘Susan / Beggar / Dissenter’. Ishmael Gander will also be part of the company, as ‘Matt / Dissenter / Beggar’, cast after a workshop with Cardboard Citizens, who have been making life-changing theatre with people who have experienced homelessness, or are at risk of homelessness, for nearly 25 years.
The Buskers Opera is directed by Lotte Wakeham (Matilda, Sweet Charity, The Other School by Dougal Irvine), with musical direction by Sean Green, lighting design is by Christopher Nairne and sound design by Andy Graham, musical staging and choreography by Lucie Pankhurst. Anna Kezia Williams, a student at University of the Arts London, will design the set, following a competition and will be mentored by leading set and costume designer David Woodhead.
Previews: 28 – 30 April, 3, 4 May
Performances Tuesday – Saturday @ 19.30, Thursday & Saturday @ 15.00
Running Time: TBC