Wise Children announce that the critically aclainemd Romantics Anonymous will be performed and broadcast live from Bristol Old Vic

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Authored by News Desk
Posted: Wednesday, August 19, 2020 - 21:42

Wise Children, Bristol Old Vic & Plush Theatricals presentRomantics Anonymous
Wise Children, Bristol Old Vic and Plush Theatricals announce that Emma Rice’s critically-acclaimed musical adaptation of Romantics Anonymous will be performed at Bristol Old Vic, and broadcast live, direct to audience’s homes nationally and globally. The show will be available to stream as a ‘digital tour’ between Tuesday 22 and Saturday 26 September, following the cancellation of its US tour due to Covid-19 and tickets are available at www.wisechildrendigital.com

In a wonderful act of industry solidarity, partner theatres across the world will sell tickets for different nights of the week. Each night will be tailored to audiences in different parts of the world, and there’ll be a sprinkle of local flavour added before each stream begins. Partner theatres include Belgrade Theatre, Berkeley Rep, Brighton Dome and Brighton Festival, Bristol Old Vic, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Curve Theatre Leicester, Derby Theatre, Eden Court Highlands, Exeter Northcott, HOME, Lighthouse Poole, Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse, Marlowe Theatre, New Zealand Festival, Norwich Theatre Royal, Oxford Playhouse, Royal & Derngate, Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Singapore Repertory Theatre, Spoleto Festival USA, St. Ann’s Warehouse, Storyhouse, The Festival Theatre, The Lowry, The Old Vic (where Wise Children are a Company in Residence), Theatr Clwyd, Theatre Royal Bath, Theatre Royal Nottingham, Theatre Royal Plymouth, Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, York Theatre Royal

The world premiere of Romantics Anonymous was originally produced by Shakespeare's Globe for the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse by special arrangement with Radio Mouse Entertainment

Add a few ingredients
Bold and brave and new
Don’t you love how chocolate is so unlike you?
 
Angélique is a gifted chocolate maker crippled by social anxiety and Jean-René is the boss of a failing chocolate factory. Angélique is so timid, she faints when people look at her; Jean-René so awkward he relies on self-help tapes and is prone to embarrassing sweating. When Angélique takes a job in Jean-René’s struggling factory, a fragile love affair unfolds. 
 
Funny, tender and painfully awkward, Romantics Anonymous is a delicious love story about breaking the mould and finding the courage to be happy.

Many of the cast will be reprising their roles with full details to be announced shortly. Following approved sport and film production guidance, the company will each have a coronavirus test before forming a bubble in Bristol. These rigorous measures mean that they will be able to perform the entire show without social distancing.

Emma Rice today said, “I have devoted my life to the live experience and the collective imagination – things that have proved impossible over the last few months. Whilst nothing will be able to replace the thrill of a night out at the theatre, this live broadcast is going to be as close to that delicious experience as we can possibly make it! Live, fresh, fun and intimate, this will remind us of what it is to share stories, hear music and, if true love has its way, even kiss. Imagine that! We are taking the utmost care to protect all of our valued team and, for one week only, we can all experience a live performance again, get lost in a wonderful love story and remember what it was to be socially intimate!

Artistic Director of Bristol Old Vic, Tom Morris added “Theatre has to reinvent itself in order to survive. That’s always true, of course, and one of the great pioneers of theatrical reinvention over the last 20 years has been Emma Rice. And now she’s at it again. A purely live fully streamed full scale musical for a live audience sitting at home all over the world. It’s so bold it turns your mind into a honeycomb. We are absolutely thrilled and honoured to be hosting the experiment in our beautiful theatre, and there is no company more suited to rekindle the fire of live performance that inspires us all than Wise Children.”

Captioned and audio-described versions of the production will be available.

Emma Rice is the proud and excited Artistic Director of her new company, Wise Children. She adapted and directed the company’s first two productions, Angela Carter’s Wise Children (The Old Vic/UK tour) and Enid Blyton’s Malory Towers (Bristol Passenger Shed/UK tour). For the ENO she directed Orpheus in the Underworld. As Artistic Director of Shakespeare’s Globe (2016/18), she directed Romantics Anonymous, Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Little Matchgirl (and Other Happier Tales). For the previous 20 years, she worked for Kneehigh as an actor, director and Artistic Director. Her productions for Kneehigh include The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk, Tristan & Yseult, 946: The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips, The Wild Bride, The Red Shoes, The Wooden Frock, The Bacchae, Cymbeline (in association with RSC), A Matter of Life and Death (in association with National Theatre), Rapunzel (in association with Battersea Arts Centre), Brief Encounter (in association with David Pugh and Dafydd Rogers Productions), Don John (in association with the RSC and Bristol Old Vic), Wah! Wah! Girls (in association with Sadler’s Wells and Theatre Royal Stratford East for World Stages), and Steptoe and Son. Other work includes the West End production of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Oedipussy (Spymonkey), The Empress(RSC), and An Audience with Meow Meow (Berkeley Repertory Theatre). She was awarded the Outstanding Contribution to British Theatre at the 2019 UK Theatre Awards.

Michael Kooman (music) and Christopher Dimond (lyrics) are a stage and screen writing team. They currently serve as songwriters for Vampirina, an animated musical TV series on the Disney Channel and Disney Junior, reaching over 100 million viewers in 115 countries. Their theatre credits include The Noteworthy Life of Howard Barnes (Village Theater), Orphie & The Book of Heroes (The Kennedy Center), The Enlightenment of Percival Von  Schmootz (Adirondack Theatre Festival), Judge Jackie: Disorder in the Court (Pittsburgh CLO), Dani Girl (Exit, Pursued by a Bear), Golden Gate (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Homemade Fusion (Ambassadors Theatre/Edinburgh Festival Fringe) and Junior Claus (Orlando Repertory Theatre). Kooman and Dimond have received the Fred Ebb Award, a Jonathan Larson Grant, the ASCAP Foundation Mary Rodgers/Lorenz Hart Award, the Samuel French Next Step Award, the Burton Lane Award and the Harold Adamson Award.

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