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Max Stafford-Clark (Photo: Sarah Lee)

Max Stafford-Clark (Photo: Sarah Lee)

Max Stafford-Clark revisits Rita, Sue And Bob Too

Published 3 May 2017

This autumn, Max Stafford-Clark will direct modern classic Rita, Sue And Bob Too in a new co-production for Out of Joint, Octagon Theatre Bolton and the Royal Court Theatre.

The production opens in Bolton in September and tours England, before arriving at the Royal Court early next year, playing from 8 to 27 January 2018.

In Andrea Dunbar’s semi-autobiographical play, best friends Rita and Sue get a lift home from married Bob after babysitting his kids. When he takes the scenic route and offers them a bit of fun, the three start a fling each of them think they control.

Dunbar wrote this, her second play, when she was just 19. First staged by Max Stafford-Clark at the Royal Court Theatre in 1982, it is a vivid portrait of girls caught between brutal childhood and an unpromising future, both hungry for adult adventure. Told with startling insight, a great ear for dialogue and wicked humour, Rita, Sue And Bob Too was adapted into a film by Alan Clark.

Max Stafford-Clark says, “Andrea wrote her first play The Arbor at fifteen, at the prompting of an enlightened teacher. It was authentic and autobiographical, and she wrote with the kind of natural flair that comes out of the blue once in a generation.”

“Rita, Sue And Bob Too is equally authentic, but also shows great growth as a dramatist. I look forward to revisiting once more her characters and the world she so unforgettably depicted.”

Rita, Sue And Bob Too will be designed by Tim Shortall, whose credits include Top Girls and This May Hurt A Bit for Out of Joint, and West End productions of La Cage Aux Folles, Sweet Charity, Mrs Henderson Presents and The Libertine. Lighting is by Jason Taylor, with sound by Emma Laxton. 

Max is Out of Joint’s Artistic Director; a former Artistic Director of Royal Court Theatre and the Traverse Theatre; and co-founder of Joint Stock Theatre Group. He has directed for the RSC, National Theatre, Sydney Theatre Company, and New York’s Roundabout Theatre and Public Theatre and most recently Culture Project, where he directed The Seagull in 2013. He leads Out of Joint, a national and international touring theatre company which aims to develop entertaining theatre that broadens horizons and investigates our times.

For more information, please visit the company’s website.


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