• TOUCHING THE VOID AND SAMARITANS TO HOST PANEL ON MENTAL WELLBEING WITH ALEX ZANE, KAT FARMER, DYLAN JONES AND SIMON YATES ON MONDAY 20TH JANUARY

• LAST CHANCE TO SEE THE SMASH HIT PRODUCTION AT THE DUKE OF YORK’S THEATRE IN LONDON’S WEST END, MUST END 29th FEBRUARY 2020

The critically acclaimed production of Touching The Void, currently running at the Duke of York’s Theatre in London’s West End, is set to host a pre-show event with Samaritans on 20th January, discussing mental wellbeing, resilience and weathering the storm.  The line-up will include: Blogger Kat Farmer; Dylan Jones OBE, Editor of GQ and mountaineer Simon Yates who scaled Siula Grande with Joe Simpson. The frank and thoughtful discussion will be hosted by presenter Alex Zane. The event forms part of Samaritan’s’ ‘Brew Monday’ campaign, encouraging people to get together and connect over a cup of tea. All proceeds will go to the charity and the production will continue to collect for them daily for two weeks after the event. The announcement comes as the production enters the final weeks of its hit run at the theatre where it must end on 29th February.

This production of Touching The Void marks the 30th anniversary of the publication of Joe Simpson’s best-selling memoir, charting his extraordinary struggle for survival on the perilous Siula Grande mountain in the Peruvian Andes. It is a powerful story and in 1985, was an extraordinary human feat. David Greig’s adaptation explores the mental resilience it must have taken Joe to descend, alone, with a broken leg, frostbite, dehydration and starvation, as well as the moral quandary of Simon, to leave him behind. Touching The Void looks at the drive to climb; the number of climbers who never make it back, and what “the void” may actually be referring to.

Ruth Sutherland, Samaritans CEO said: “We know that some people face their own obstacles – their own mountains and feats of survival – every single day. For all kinds of reasons this winter, it might be difficult to get out of bed and face the day ahead. But Joe proved that survival beyond insurmountable odds is possible. David’s show, Touching The Void in the West End has proved that “anything is possible in the theatre”*. And Samaritans’ message is that together, we can make a future feel possible, even when it feels like everything is stacked against you. This Blue Monday, remember to take time and check in – on yourself and on each other. It can really help us weather the ups and downs of life.”

Tom Morris directs the stage version of Touching the Void, adapted by The Lyceum’s David Greig (The Events, The Suppliant Women, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) from the award-winning memoir by Joe Simpson, which also became a BAFTA-winning film. They are joined by Designer Ti Green, Sound Designer and Composer Jon Nicholls, Lighting Designer Chris Davey, Movement Director Sasha Milavic Davies and casting by Jill Green CDG.

FIERY ANGEL

Headed by Edward Snape and Marilyn Eardley, Fiery Angel is a theatrical production company that produces and manages drama, comedies, musicals and event theatre in the West End, and on tour throughout the United Kingdom and internationally.

Upcoming productions include: Tennessee Williams’ Night of the Iguana (West End), Florian Zeller’s The Son (West End), Peppa Pig Live! (West End).

Recent productions include: Home, I’m Darling (West End and UK tour), Long Day’s Journey Into Night (West End, New York and Los Angeles), Mary Stuart (West End), Love From a Stranger (UK tour), The Jungle Book (UK tour), Mel Brook’s Young Frankenstein (West End), Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company inaugural season: The Winter’s Tale, Harlequinade/All On Her Own, Red Velvet, The Painkiller, Romeo and Juliet, The Entertainer (West End), Ben Hur (Tricycle Theatre), The 39 Steps (9 years at the Criterion Theatre in the West End, 3 years on Broadway, 3 UK tours and presented in over 40 territories worldwide to date; Olivier, Tony and Moliere winner), To Kill a Mockingbird (UK tour and Barbican), The Scottsboro Boys (West End), The Ladykillers (Gielgud, Vaudeville and UK tour) and Ghost Stories (West End).

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AMBASSADOR THEATRE GROUP PRODUCTIONS

Ambassador Theatre Group Productions is the producing and general management arm of Ambassador Theatre Group. The company is committed to presenting high-quality musicals and plays across the West End, Broadway and UK regions and increasingly international.

Recent productions and co-productions in London and the West End include 9 to 5 the Musical (Savoy Theatre); Betrayal starring Tom Hiddleston (Harold Pinter Theatre); The Lehman Trilogy (Piccadilly Theatre); The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-Time (Piccadilly Theatre); Caroline, or Change (Playhouse Theatre, Olivier Award for Sharon D Clarke); the Pinter at the Pinter season presented by the Jamie Lloyd Company (Harold Pinter Theatre); King Lear starring Ian McKellen (Duke of York’s Theatre); the Tony Award-winning play Oslo (Harold Pinter Theatre); Glengarry Glen Ross starring Christian Slater (Playhouse Theatre); Buried Child featuring Ed Harris in an Olivier Award-nominated performance (Trafalgar Studios); Big Fish starring Kelsey Grammer (The Other Palace); Hamlet starring Andrew Scott (Harold Pinter Theatre); the Jamie Lloyd company season of The Maids and The Homecoming (Trafalgar Studios) and Doctor Faustus (Duke of York’s Theatre); the Olivier Award-winning Oresteia (Trafalgar Studios) and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (Savoy Theatre and UK Tour).

On Broadway productions and co-productions include Pretty Woman (Nederlander Theatre) and Sunday in the Park with George (Hudson Theatre) which starred Jake Gyllenhaal and Annaleigh Ashford, both of which will be coming to the West End in 2020.

ATG Productions is committed to bringing high quality shows to the regions and is proud to be producing and general managing Ian McKellen’s 80 date tour of the UK which will conclude with a West End run at the Harold Pinter Theatre in the autumn of 2019. Recent touring productions and co-productions include Abigail’s Party starring Jodie Prenger; Glengarry Glen Ross starring Nigel Harman and Mark Benton; Strangers on a Train based on Patricia Highsmith’s novel; the Victorian thriller Gaslight starring Kara Tointon, Keith Allen and Rupert Young; Noël Coward’s comedy Private Lives, starring Tom Chambers and Charlotte Ritchie and the multi-Olivier Award-winning musical Sunny Afternoon.

BRISTOL OLD VIC

Bristol Old Vic is the longest continuously running theatre in the UK, and celebrated its 250th anniversary in 2016. The historic playhouse aims to inspire audiences with its own original productions, both at home and on tour, whilst nurturing the next generation of artists, whether that be through their 350-strong Young Company, their many outreach and education projects or their trailblazing artist development programme, Bristol Ferment.

They use their funding to support experiment and innovation, to allow access to their programme for people who would not otherwise encounter it, or be able to afford it, and to keep their extraordinary heritage alive and animated.

On 24 Sep 2018, Bristol Old Vic completed its 2-year multi-million-pound redevelopment project, which transformed its front of house space into a warm and welcoming public building for all of Bristol to enjoy, created a new studio theatre and opened up its unique theatrical heritage to the public for the first time.

ROYAL LYCEUM THEATRE, EDINBURGH

Today it is Scotland’s leading producing theatre and home to The Royal Lyceum Theatre Company.

The company has gained a reputation for excellence in both classical and contemporary work and is committed to developing Scotland’s considerable indigenous talents while presenting the best of international drama in Scotland’s capital city.

Season 2018/19 saw the company stage new productions of Twelfth Night, Cyrano de Bergerac, a Scottish premiere of Wendy and Peter Pan, and three world premieres; Touching the Void by Joe Simpson adapted by David Greig (a co-production with Bristol Old Vic, Royal & Derngate and Fuel), The Duchess [of Malfi] in a new version by Zinnie Harris, and a brand new stage musical Local Hero, a retelling of the classic Scottish film with book by Bill Forsyth and David Greig, and new music and lyrics by Mark Knopfler, which will play at The Lyceum and The Old Vic, London.

ROYAL AND DERNGATE, NORTHAMPTON

Royal & Derngate Northampton is the main venue for arts and entertainment in Northamptonshire, with audience members for live shows and films numbering 378,000 last year, and an additional 115,000 seeing its work on tour at over 100 venues. Named Regional Theatre of the Year in The Stage Awards in 2011 (and nominated again in 2016), the theatre won the UK Theatre Awards for Best Presentation of Touring Theatre in 2015 and Best Touring Production in 2016 for The Herbal Bed, and The Stage Ensemble Award and a Fringe First for Education, Education, Education in 2017.

Alongside touring nationally and internationally Royal & Derngate’s Made in Northampton productions have transferred to the West End and Broadway as well as Shakespeare’s Globe, the National Theatre, The Southbank Centre and the Lyric Hammersmith. Productions transferring to London this year include Education, Education, Education, The Worst Witch, Our Lady of Kibeho, The Singing Mermaid and Touching the Void. The venue also presents a diverse range of visiting productions on both the Derngate and Royal stages, featuring musicals, dance, comedy and music, including a residency from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. This year the venue hosts the UK Musical Theatre Conference, Devoted & Disgruntled 13 and the International Teach First conference.

Royal & Derngate’s award-winning, nationally recognised Get Involved programme engages with over 21,000 participants each year, including schools, families and communities in Northamptonshire and beyond, and its two-screen cinema welcomed over 82,000 audience members to the best in world, independent, British and mainstream film. Meanwhile, the theatre’s Generate artistic development programme supports hundreds of local and emerging artists and practitioners each year.

Royal & Derngate also continues to work in partnership to manage The Core at Corby Cube.

FUEL

Fuel produces an adventurous, playful and significant programme of work – live, digital, and across art forms – for a large and representative audience across the UK and beyond.

We collaborate with outstanding artists with fresh perspectives and approaches who seek to explore our place in the world, expose our fears, understand our hopes for the future, create experiences which change us and in turn empower us to make change in the world around us.

Founded in 2004, Fuel is led by Kate McGrath, and is a National Portfolio Organisation of Arts Council England, supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and by the Wellcome Trust’s Sustaining Excellence programme.

Highlights of Fuel’s 2019 Season include Inua Ellams’ acclaimed hit Barber Shop Chronicles touring the UK and running at London’s iconic Roundhouse, as well as his new work Three Sisters premiering at the National Theatre, London. Other highlights include UK and international tours of Encounter’s The Kids Are Alright and Lewis Gibson’s The Day I Fell Into A Book and national and international human rights project Fly The Flag, with artist Ai Weiwei, in co-production with the Donmar Warehouse, Human Rights Watch, Liberty, the National Theatre, Sadler’s Wells and Tate.