Leeds Playhouse has begun a major redevelopment programme which will result in a striking new city-facing entrance; improved access around the building; enhanced financial and environmental stability and the opening of the Bramall Rock Void – a third performance space within the foundations of the theatre.
During this time most of the building will be off-limits, however, the Playhouse has prepared a unique pop-up theatre space enabling a progressive and bold programme of performance to continue. There will also be numerous performances taking place in venues across the region – reaching out and involving the community of Leeds City and beyond.
Leeds Playhouse Associate Director Amy Leach: “We are thrilled with our forthcoming season: it’s ambitious in scope, broad in range, and featuring diverse stories that we feel will deeply resonate with our audiences in Leeds and the wider North.
Opening the Pop-Up season is Jim Cartwright’s brutally poetic study of everyday lives, Road, from 5th – 29th September. Set on a forgotten Northern street on a raucous night, Cartwright’s play explores the spirit of a working-class community through a series of powerful monologues and duologues.
The Furnace Festival also returns in October with award-winning artist Selina Thompson and her critically acclaimed salt. from 2nd – 3rd October, followed by Blackthorn from 4th – 6th October.
Artistic Director James Brining directs Europe, David Greig’s 1994 exploration of changing identities in a contemporary society, which runs from 12th October – 3rd November. Set in and around a small-town railway station, the play follows the plight of two economic refugees as they arrive in an unnamed town near an unnamed European border.
Four 15-minute radio dramas exploring migration by Yorkshire-based writers, performed at Leeds College of Music and broadcast live on BBC Radio Leeds, forms the basis of Airplays – celebrating of the 70th anniversary of the SS Empire Windrush and running from 23rd – 27th October.
Commemorating the 250th anniversary of The Leeds Library, West Yorkshire writer Emma Adams examines the role of libraries in the age of the internet search engine with The Things We Wouldn’t Otherwise Find, from 6th – 17th November.
Nick Ahad’s Partition returns on 6th – 10th November, commemorating the 70th anniversary of India’s partition and the creation of Pakistan. As well as performances in the Pop-Up theatre, the radio play will tour to Leeds schools and the Bradford Alhambra.
Leeds Playhouse and Opera North join forces to present Not Such Quiet Girls from 29th November. Marking the centenary of the end of WWI, this brand new production explores female resilience from the front line.
Over the Christmas period, Charles Dickens’ classic, A Christmas Carol, follows the adventure of cold-hearted Ebenezer Scrooge on Christmas Eve in Victorian Leeds, in a new adaptation by Deborah McAndrew.
Leeds Playhouse Artistic Director James Brining said: “At this exciting moment of change I am delighted that we have put together such a wide range of diverse work for audiences to experience in both the Pop-Up theatre and across the city region. The specially designed new space in our workshop will provide a unique environment for these extraordinary plays whilst the redevelopment of the building takes place, and the work around the region will build on our desire to reach out and engage with diverse audiences across the North.
Tickets for the Pop-Up theatre go on general sale from Monday 25 June. Visit leedsplayhouse.org.uk for more details.