New Vic to celebrate centenary of suffrage

Steve Orme

A season of plays to mark the centenary of women’s suffrage is to be staged at Newcastle-under-Lyme’s New Vic Theatre.

The first play in the season will be April De Angelis’s Playhouse Creatures. The drama takes audiences backstage in a Restoration playhouse when women celebrated being permitted to act on stage for the first time.

Zoë Waterman directs. She was at the helm of Laura Eason’s Remarkable Invisible at the Theatre by the Lake, Keswick in August 2017 and The Rubenstein Kiss by James Phillips at Nottingham Playhouse in 2015. Playhouse Creatures runs from 2 until 24 February.

New Vic artistic director Theresa Heskins will adapt and direct Elizabeth Robins’s Votes For Women at the theatre-in-the-round from 6 until 24 March, coinciding with International Women’s Day. Robins’s play first opened in 1907, 11 years before women gained the right to vote. It explores how the political world intersects with the personal.

The New Vic then teams up with The Dukes, Lancaster for the first time to stage Willy Russell’s Educating Rita. It will be directed by Sarah Punshon and runs from 18 April until 5 May.

The season ends with the return of two touring theatre companies, the John Godber Company with its world première of The Scary Bikers from 27 until 31 March and Northern Broadsides with its new adaptation of Charles Dickens’s Hard Times from 4 until 14 April.