Worst Witch wins Olivier for Northampton theatre

Published: 26 October 2020
Reporter: Steve Orme

Danielle Bird (Mildred) and (Rachel Heaton) as Miss Hardbroom in The Worst Witch Credit: Manuel Harlan

Royal and Derngate’s Made in Northampton co-production of The Worst Witch scooped the award for best family show at the 2020 Olivier Awards—the first time that the Northampton venue has won an Olivier.

The Worst Witch was the 2018 Christmas show at Royal and Derngate before touring the UK and having a six-week summer season at the Vaudeville Theatre in London’s West End.

Adapted by Emma Reeves from Jill Murphy’s books and directed by Theresa Heskins, the show was a co-production with Kenny Wax Family Entertainment, Novel and Nica Burns.

Royal and Derngate artistic director James Dacre said, “we’re absolutely delighted that this enchanting Made in Northampton production has been honoured with an Olivier Award. Its success is a testament to all the hard work, passion and creativity that went into the creation, support and promotion of the show.

“It’s so fitting that this award is in the category of best family show, given how central work for families, children and young people is to all that we do.”

Royal and Derngate’s production of Katori Hall’s Our Lady of Kibeho, which had its UK debut in Northampton in January 2018, was nominated in the category for outstanding achievement in an affiliate theatre for its transfer to the Theatre Royal Stratford East in autumn 2019.