For fall 2012, the Ustinov Studio embarks upon its third season of new commissions and UK premieres.
THE WELSH BOY by Julian Mitchell (2012)
Adapted from The True Anti-Pamela by James Parry (1741)
Tonight, 13th September - Saturday 13th October
Directed by Matthew Lloyd
Press Night: Wednesday 19th September, 7pm
The Autumn season, all UK premieres, opens with Julian Mitchell’s The Welsh Boy, a lusty 18th century tale of youthful passion, set in Ross-on-Wye and Bath. The second play, deadkidsongs, is an adaptation of the critically acclaimed contemporary novel by Toby Litt. Finally, Dostoevsky's classic novella, The Double, about the nightmare of meeting your own badly-behaved double, is directed by the Ustinov’s Artistic Director, Laurence Boswell.
The season set and costume designer is Ti Green; lighting designer is Ben Ormerod; sound designer and composer is Jon Nicholls.
The Welsh Boy is a scintillating rediscovery of one of the hidden gems of eighteenth-century literature and brings back to life a true story of passionate love and outrageous sexual scandal in the sleepy provincial town of Ross-on-Wye.
Jem Parry is blessed with a wonderful singing voice that has allowed him to escape his humble origins in South Wales. Mary Powell is the richest heiress in the district - also its loveliest, and its most daring. When Mary engages Jem as her music master their lessons at the spinet turn into tutorials in the most heavenly pleasures. But love is one thing, sex another and marriage yet a third.
James Parry published his personal diary under the title The True Anti-Pamela as an act of revenge against Mary Powell. He saw their torrid affair as a direct inversion of Samuel Richardson's contemporary best-seller, Pamela, Or Virtue Rewarded, with himself in the role of lowly-born innocent and his lover the aristocratic villain of the piece.
The Welsh Boy reunites the team that created the critically acclaimed adaptation of Ford Madox Ford's The Good Soldier at the Ustinov Studio in 2010.
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dedakidsongs based on the novel by Toby Litt
Thursday 18th October – Saturday 17th November
Directed (and adapted) by Gary Sefton
Press Night: Thursday 25th October, 7pm
Over the summer of the Silver Jubilee in the heart of the English countryside four boys are playing war games and preparing for an attack from the Ruskies. But what starts off as innocent fun begins to turn nasty after the death of one of the gang members. As the boys plan their revenge on the adults they hold responsible, the extent of their vindictiveness becomes truly terrifying.
Toby Litt’s thrilling black comedy received rave reviews when it was first published in 2001. This macabre adventure is now brought to the stage for the first time ever in a fast-paced, highly imaginative piece of theatre. deadkidsongs promises to take you on an exhilarating and shocking journey into the savage heart of boyhood.
Gary Sefton’s recent directing credits include the five-star production of Diary Of A Nobody (Royal & Derngate) and the award-winning Diva In Me (Brighton Festival 2010).
THE DOUBLE by Fyodor Dostoevsky (1846)
Adapted by Meredith Oakes (2012)
Thursday 22nd November – Saturday 22nd December
Directed by Laurence Boswell
Press Night: Thursday 29th November, 7pm
Imagine waking up one morning and finding that another person - an exact replica of you - has hijacked your body, and, posing as you, infiltrates your friendships, gatecrashes parties, humiliates waiters, behaves disgracefully and generally wreaks havoc! Everyone believes this imposter is you and yet in every aspect of his personality he is the sort of person you would abhor. This is the horror that faces Mr Golyadkin, a mild-mannered government clerk, when he awakes one morning in St Petersburg and realises that his world has been turned upside down.
The production will be directed by the Ustinov’s Artistic Director, Laurence Boswell, whose productions include The Phoenix of Madrid, Iphigenia (which was translated by Meredith Oakes), The Surprise of Love and In the Next Room or The Vibrator Play. This bold new adaptation of Dostoevsky’s brilliant, hilarious and intriguing novella will be filled with special effects and accompanied by nineteenth century music and dance.