Soho theatre has announced a packed spring 2014 season, combining its usual eclectic mix of established theatre companies and new voices to create a programme of work set to challenge our social conventions.
From gender politics to daytime television, the venue’s Artistic Director Steve Marmion described the forthcoming offerings as mixing “great young companies, boundary pushing dance, established writers and amazing actors,” to create a season that will “challenge your view, but most importantly entertain”.
Opening the season from 21 January to 2 February is Rashdash’s gritty take on Cinderella, The Ugly Sisters; a messy, noisy and sinister cabaret offering a very new perspective on the classic story. Illustrating the Soho theatre’s diverse programming, the show will shortly be followed by Probe’s equally inventive but very different philosophical drama Running On Empty (4 to 16 February), which takes an epic look at the human condition, exploring our resilience to loss, our struggle for a future and the emptiness we strive to overcome.
From 20 February to 30 March, one of the season’s highlights will make its world premiere at the venue, 2013’s Verity Bargate Award winning The One. Written by Vicky Jones, the comedy about a couple trapped in a destructive and violent cycle of love, lust and self-loathing will star Evening Standard Most Promising Playwright long-list nominee Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who earlier this year starred in her own play and Fringe First Award-winning show Fleabag.
The One, described by the Soho theatre as “a tight and vicious three-hander with caustic and hilarious dialogue”, will be the only play in the season directed by Marmion and is set to tackle the season’s theme head on, dealing with sexual politics and emotional manipulation.
Acclaimed physical theatre company Told By An Idiot will follow the premiere to take centre stage with its new show Never Try This At Home (2 to27 April), produced in association with Soho theatre and the Birmingham Rep, and directed by its Artistic Director Paul Hunter.
Returning to London following its Young Vic hit My Perfect Mind and its forthcoming family show at the Barbican theatre Get Happy!, the company takes inspiration from legendary Saturday morning shows Tiswas and Going Live to imagine the survivors of an infamous fictional TV show Shushi and their insidious experience of fame.
While the Soho theatre’s Main Theatre will house these productions, its Upstairs space will be equally busy with Cyod’s interactive Choose Your Own Documentary (4 to 16 February), where audiences will be invited to decide the protagonists fate with voting keypads, regular visiting company HighTide Festival Theatre’s Smallholding (18 February to 9 March), Chris Dunkley’s new love story about adult co-dependency, and The Husbands (20 February to 30 March), Sharmila Chauhan’s inventive drama that flips gender roles and imagines a world where women can have as many husbands as they like.
As always, the Soho theatre’s spring season will boast a jam-packed line-up for Soho Downstairs where leading cabaret and comedy performers frequent the intimate space. Highlights include rising stand-up star Seann Walsh (3 to 8 February), in-demand headliner Tom Rhodes (13 to 15 February) and award-winning cabaret performer Lynn Ruth Miller (11 to 22 March).
Visit the Soho theatre website for details of the full spring programme.