A brand-new adaptation of Shakespeare's The Tempest, re-imagined for those ages six and older, will play alongside Much Ado and will feature a strong interactive element. The season runs May 25-Sept. 12.
The theatre's artistic director, Timothy Sheader, who took over with last year's season and has since directed Imagine This in the West End, will direct both Much Ado and Hello, Dolly! The latter will be choreographed by Stephen Mear, who also choreographed last year's Gigi at Regent's Park and is currently represented on Broadway by his work on Mary Poppins (co-choreographed with Matthew Bourne) and The Little Mermaid.
Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest — which re-introduces a revival of a non-Shakespearean play for the first time in a decade – will be directed by Irina Brown. The Tempest is directed by Liam Steel, who choreographed Sheader's production of Imagine This in the West End and Romeo and Juliet at Regent's Park last summer.
Much Ado runs May 25-June 27, with The Tempest playing alongside it from June 5-28. The run will include two Sunday performances to provide more opportunities for families to experience it together. The Importance of Being Earnest runs July 3-25. Hello, Dolly! runs July 30- Sept. 12.
Casting is yet to be announced. Priority and members' booking opens Jan. 12, and public booking (by phone and online) opens Feb. 9. Booking in person is available at the theatre from March 30. To book tickets contact the box office at 0844 826 4242 or visit www.openairtheatre.com.