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Looking Back at 2018 at the King’s Head Theatre

La boheme at Trafalgar Studios (c) Scott Rylander.
La boheme at Trafalgar Studios (c) Scott Rylander.

Olivier award nomination, Off-Broadway transfer and record audience numbers help make 2018 one of the most successful years in the KHT’s 48-year history. Executive Director of the King’s Head Theatre, Fiona English, said: “The King’s Head Theatre has reached giddying new heights in 2018, with more audiences, accolades and awe-inspiring productions than ever before. I cannot wait to top it in 2019.”

In 2018, 76,474 saw a King’s Head Theatre show, 37,586 at their 110 seat home on Upper Street and 38,888 elsewhere in the UK and internationally, with 686 performances of 113 shows in their London venue alone. The King’s Head Theatre transferred work to Trafalgar Studios 2 for the first time; with a new English version of Puccini’s La bohème and the European premiere of Australian playwright Tommy Murphy’s Strangers in Between. They will be followed in 2019 by a transfer of Kevin Elyot’s landmark drama, Coming Clean. La bohème was also nominated for Best New Opera Production at the 2018 Olivier Awards, alongside two Royal Opera House productions.

At the Edinburgh Fringe, the King’s Head Theatre staged a new parody musical about the life of Formula One racing driver, Hamilton (Lewis), in Assembly Festival’s Studio One, and (sorry), Susie Sillet’s one-woman exploration of millennial guilt, directed by Junior Associate, Jennifer Davis. In addition to UK touring and an Edinburgh Fringe run, King’s Head Theatre and In Yer Face Theatre’s production of Irvine Welsh’s Trainspotting opened Off Broadway for the first time in July. It is currently booking until January 2019. There have now been more than 900 performances of Trainspotting in total.

After introducing a gender policy in 2017, pledging that over 50% of the artists and creatives they worked with on in-house productions would identify as non-male, and are pleased to announce that, in 2018, 57.8% of the creatives worked with identified as non-male, and they hope to build on this in 2019.

Carol Tambor award-winning company Atticist were made an Associate Company following their critically-acclaimed, sell-out revival of Steven Berkoff’s East, which played for four weeks at the King’s Head Theatre in January 2018. They will return with the first London revival of David Greig’s Outlying Islands next year. Female-led new musical theatre company Fat Rascal were made an Associate Company following a return season of their gender-swapped parody of Beauty & the Beast. They will return with their hit comedy-musical about a female superhero, Vulvarine, next year.

The King’s Head Theatre was established in 1970. Passionate about championing ethically produced fringe theatre, we are known for our challenging work and support of early career artists, including their award-winning Trainee Directors scheme, which supports four individuals for a one-year residency. They are committed to fighting prejudice through the work they stage, the artists and staff they work with and by producing work for minority audience groups. They believe in fair pay for all on the fringe and create accessible routes for early career artists to stage their work; work they are passionate about.



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