New End Theatre Beyond in association with the Carriageworks will present the World Premiere of Jerusalem Tango, a new play by Pat Rowe, at the Carriageworks, Leeds from 1-26 May and at the Arts Depot, London from 30-31 May.
One year after the end of World War II and two years before Israeli independence. A young Jewish woman goes to the King David Hotel to dance the tango. Her partner, a British officer, falls under her spell.
Enter the tangled world of love and conflicting loyalties behind the true story of a terrorist outrage that shocked the world and signaled the end of the British colonial presence in the Middle East.
Jerusalem Tango is written by former broadcast and print journalist Pat Rowe, whose previous credits include the acclaimed New End Theatre production of Toad which was subsequently made into a BBC Radio 4 Afternoon Play with Imelda Staunton in the title role and Forbidden which was performed at the Edinburgh Festival, and subsequently in Cleveland Ohio. Rowe has recently published her first short story, set in contemporary Jerusalem.
Pat Rowe said about the new play “I wanted to write about the 30 year period in recent history when the British recreated their colonial lives in a country with traditions so far removed from that lifestyle. The bombing of the King David Hotel where 91 people lost their lives was a major turning point, and it sharply accelerated the British decision to leave. I wanted to look at that moment through the prism of a relationship between a young Palestinian Jewish woman and a British officer, their love and conflicting loyalties revealing so much. Although I have changed their and the other characters’ names and fictionalised their stories, all the characters in Jerusalem Tango are based on real people.”
The production is directed by Olivia Rowe (no relation to playwright Pat), costumes designed by Tracey Cliffe, lighting by Philip Jones and sound by Yaniv Friedel. The cast will feature Peter Alexander, Jem Dobbs, Michael Forrest, Jenny Leveton and Joel Parry.
Jerusalem Tango will be the debut play to be produced by the New End Theatre Beyond. The theatre company, which is led by Brian Daniels, Chief Executive and producer at London’s former New End Theatre, has secured a regular production slot at the Carriageworks Theatre in Leeds and plans to premiere and develop new small scale/Fringe productions at the venue over the coming years.
Pat Rowe’s first play for theatre, TOAD, was chosen to receive an Acorn Award from the Theatre Investment Fund ‘to assist outstanding new writing with commercial potential’. The play, a black comedy, was produced at the New End Theatre in London to excellent reviews. TOAD was then commissioned by BBC Radio 4 and broadcast as an Afternoon Play with Imelda Staunton in a title role.
Another play, FORBIDDEN, which was set in Berlin and inspired by a wartime love story, was produced at the Edinburgh Festival and had its North American premiere in Cleveland Ohio. FORBIDDEN also received a staged reading at The Hampstead Theatre, sponsored by JCCLondon.
Rowe graduated from David Edgar’s MA in Playwriting Studies at Birmingham University and developed a play there, SCROUNGER, about an asylum seeker, which went on to a rehearsed reading at London’s Jerwood Space.
Formerly a broadcast and print journalist with extensive experience across a wide range of BBC Radio news and feature programmes, including Radio 4’s World at One/PM, Kaleidoscope (as was), as well as the World Service, and a variety of publications, including the Radio Times, Observer, Sunday Times and Guardian.
Her first short story, set in contemporary Jerusalem, was recently published.
Tuesday 1– Saturday 26 May, 7.45pm (Mat: 3, 10, 17 & 24 May at 2pm) - The Carriageworks, Leeds. Ticket prices: £9-£10. Box Office: 0113 2243801 or http://www.carriageworkstheatre.org.uk/.
Thursday 30-Friday 31 May at 7.30pm - Arts Depot, London. Ticket prices: £12-£14. Box Office: 02083095454 or http://www.artsdepot.co.uk.