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Spring in its step for Lakeland

Published: 17 November 2018

Theatre by the Lake’s 2019 season in Keswick includes a world première production from Howard Brenton, Educating Rita starring Stephen Tompkinson, two regional premières in the Studio and a special fundraising event featuring Ian McKellen.

The year includes nine home-grown TBTL productions alongside a diverse programme of visiting work.

Following a packed February and March, the spring season kicks off with the world première production of Creditors by August Strindberg (March 22 to April 20) in a new adaptation by Brenton and co-produced with London’s Jermyn Street Theatre. Brenton’s adaptation of Miss Julie was a huge hit in 2017 and will be reprised at the theatre for five special performances (April 1 to 4) before going on regional tour across Cumbria and beyond.

In the Main House, Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray will star Jonathan Wrather in the lead role (best known for his role as Pierce Harris in Emmerdale), followed by TBTL’s co-production of Willy Russell’s classic Educating Rita. The Picture of Dorian Gray plays April 8 to 13, with Educating Rita playing from April 18 to 27.

The summer season of home-produced work runs in rep with a resident company of 11 from May 23 to November 2.

The three Main House productions are:

  • The Ladykillers by Graham Linehan – one of the best-loved British pictures of all time transformed from macabre comedy into madcap mayhem.
  • The Rise and Fall of Little Voice by Jim Cartwright – the comic tragedy about finding your voice in a noisy world.
  • Dear Uncle adapted by Alan Ayckbourn – adaption of Chekhov’s masterpiece of unrequited love, Uncle Vanya, set in the Lake District.

The Studio productions are:

  • The Children by Lucy Kirkwood – regional première of award-winning play, first seen at the Royal Court in 2016.
  • My Mother Said I Never Should by Charlotte Keatley –classic drama in which secrets, lies, loves and momentous decisions reverberate through four generations.
  • Guards at the Taj by Rajiv Joseph – TBTL’s second regional premiere was an award-winning hit in America and had its European premiere at the Bush Theatre in 2017.

Theatre by the Lake’s Christmas production 2019-2020 will be an adaptation of A Christmas Carol.

David Upton