West End Play Handbagged and More Slated for 2019 Brits Off Broadway

Off-Broadway News   West End Play Handbagged and More Slated for 2019 Brits Off Broadway
The annual festival of works from the U.K. will kick off in April.
Beth Hylton and Susan Lynskey in <i>Handbagged</i>
Beth Hylton and Susan Lynskey in Handbagged Kaley Etzkorn

This spring, 59E59 Theaters will once again welcome the Brits Off Broadway festival, an annual celebration of theatre from the U.K. that will run April 16 through June 30 in the company's three Off-Broadway spaces.

The 2019 lineup features Moira Buffini’s Olivier Award-winning West End comedy Handbagged, as well Sarah-Louise Young and Russell Lucas' Julie Madly Deeply, a musical ode to showbiz legend Julie Andrew featuring songs from Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music, and My Fair Lady.

Theater B launches this year’s Brits Off Broadway with Instructions for American Servicemen in Britain, based on a war-time publication that promised to school U.S. servicemen on the exotic ways of their British counterparts. Adapted with permission from the Bodleian Library's publication Instructions for American Servicemen, 1942, the play is co-written by Dan March, Matt Sheahan, James Millard, and John Walton and directed by Walton. March, Millard, and Sheahan star for a run scheduled April 16–May 12.

Next up will be 2013 Fringe First Award winner, Feral (May 14–June 2), a devised piece from Tortoise in a Nutshell blending performance, puppetry, film, and live animation. Ross MacKay directs a cast made up of Alex Bird, Jim Harbourne, Arran Howie, and Matthew Leonard. Also scheduled for Theater B will be Julie Madly Deeply, written by Young with contributions from and directed by Lucas. Michael Roulston and Young star (June 11–June 29).

Theater A will feature two productions making their New York City premieres: Torben Betts' Caroline's Kitchen, a send up of TV chefs and the fickle nature of celebrity (April 25–May 25). Alastair Whatley directs a cast made up of Jasmyn Banks, Elizabeth Boag, Tom England, Aden Gillett, Caroline Langrishe, and James Sutton.

The production will be followed by Handbagged (June 2–30), directed by Indhu Rubasingham, and featuring Anita Carey, Kate Fahy, Beth Hylton, John Lescault, Susan Lynskey, and Cody LeRoy Wilson.

Theater C will first feature Zoe Mills' Killing Time, starring the playwright and her mother Brigit Forsyth, with direction by Antony Eden (April 18–May 12). Followed will be Lucy Fleming's Posting Letters to the Moon, based on the wartime correspondence between actor Celia Johnson and her husband Peter Fleming (brother to James Bond creator Ian Fleming). Performed by their daughter Lucy Fleming with Simon Williams (Upstairs Downstairs), performances will run May 14–June 2.

Rounding out the festival will be Kieran Hurley and Gary McNair's Fringe First Award-winning Square Go, a play about school-yard masculinity featuring an original soundtrack by members of the band Frightened Rabbit. Finn den Hertog directs for a run scheduled June 5–30.

Tickets to Brits Off Broadway go on sale on February 26 at noon, with a special pre-sale for 59E59 Members beginning February 19 at noon. Tickets are available by calling the box office on (646) 892-7999 or online at 59e59.org.

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