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Diverse new season for Soho

Published April 17, 2008

Four premieres, an Australian comedy show for kids and a promenade performance in Chinatown are some of the highlights in the autumn/winter season of the Soho theatre under Artistic Director Lisa Goldman.

The Soho welcomes the National Theatre of Scotland to kick off the season on 4 September with its production of Venus As A Boy, which is currently playing the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Adapted by Tam Dean Burn from the novel by Luke Sutherland, Venus As A Boy follows a young boy from Orkney through a turbulent childhood, first love and escape to a life teaming with pimps and transsexuals in the underbelly of Soho, to his eventual death.

Moonwalking In Chintown, the Soho’s first ever walkabout performance, runs from 19-29 September. A lantern-lit promenade to coincide with the Chinese Autumn Moon Festival, created in collaboration with London’s Chinese communities, the piece weaves together stories from across the generations and takes audiences into the alleyways, landmarks and cultural heart of Chinatown.

Soho teams up with Talawa Theatre Company to present the first of four new plays in the season, Michael Bhim’s Pure Gold, which runs from 27 September-20 October. Directed by Indhu Rubasingham, Bhim’s play – his first to be produced – presents an affecting snapshot of black inner-city life and a young father’s battle to support his family.

Roy Williams’s new play Joe Guy follows Pure Gold, playing from 23 October-24 November. Williams is writer-in-residence at the Almeida and the author of plays including Little Sweet Thing, Starstruck and Sing Yer Heart Out For The Lads. His new work is a powerful story of identity, celebrity and tensions between British Africans and Caribbeans, revealed when a young Ghanaian-born footballer is thrust into the media spotlight and lauded as the new David Beckham.

October to January sees a new one-woman show combining magic and visual spectacle from Marisa Carnesky called Magic War (30 October-10 November), a new work by Anthony Neilson performed by actors from the Royal Shakespeare Company ensemble (29 November-5 January), and Men Of Steel, a high-energy show from Australia for kids aged six and over. An award-winner at the Melbourne Comedy Festival 2006, Men Of Steel sees three madcap chefs employ everything from frying pans to popcorn to animate a world in which mischievous, person-shaped cookie cutters create adventures, mayhem and mess. It runs from 6 December-6 January.

The Soho has also lined up a programme of stand-up comedy (including Stewart Lee, Rhona Cameron, Paul Sinha, Paul Foot, Rich Hall and Stephen K Amos), children’s entertainment from Howard Reid and Rachel Trachtenburg, plus talks with a diverse range of speakers from acclaimed director Richard Eyre to former pop star Kerry Katona.

CB

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