Two productions will run in rep, both directed by Phil Willmott, whose original musical Once Upon a Time at the Adelphi recently premiered at the Liverpool Playhouse. Lorca's Blood Wedding will begin performances on July 31, with an official opening on Aug 1, and will then run with performances from Thursdays to Sundays at 8 PM. It will be joined by Petite Rouge – A Cajun Red Riding Hood, running from Aug. 13, with an official opening on Aug. 15, with performances on Wednesdays and Friday to Sunday at 6 PM.
Lorca's play is set in a village in Andalusia which is bustling with preparations for a rural wedding — but at midnight it isn't the groom who races his stallion through the moonlight to claim the bride. Lorca was inspired to write the play by a newspaper account of a local woman who abandoned her husband-to-be on their wedding day to escape with her childhood sweetheart, and used this story to explore desire, repression, ritual and the dilemmas of a rural community blighted by knife crime.
It is presented in a version by the celebrated poet Ted Hughes, and features music composed by Joe Fredericks, who is also the musical director.
Petite Rouge – A Cajun Red Riding Hood has a script by Joan Cushing, based on Mike Artell's best-selling children's book, and mixes lively jazz with sultry Cajun music to tell the story of the brave title character and her cowardly cat TeJean as they dodge a wily alligator Claude through the swamps of Louisiana and the fun of Mardi Gras en route to Grandmere's house.
There is no need to book tickets for the free theatre season. According to press materials, "just turn up — there is room for 1,000 people at each performance. And the actors perform whatever the weather!" There is a barbecue and bar for refreshments at the site.