Having been appointed Artistic Director in January 2020, Christopher Haydon, has been prevented from announcing his plans until now due to COVID-19. With an emphasis on the female voice, his inaugural season includes five Rose Original productions, 4 extraordinary dramas and 3 world premieres. Chris said of his first season,
“I have been hugely proud to work with the amazing Rose team to devise my first season, in spite of the extraordinary challenges presented by the past year. These shows combine uplifting stories which bring some much needed joy, with plays that ask provocative, searching questions about the society we live in. Alongside the productions, we are expanding the creative family that surrounds the Rose with our new group of associates. I am delighted to be working with both experienced artists who will help guide the vision of the theatre and emerging talent whom we will mentor and support in every way we can. I’m also really excited to have some of the UK’s best playwrights under commission.”
We're also developing projects with Morgan Lloyd Malcolm, Lulu Raczka, Onjali Q. Raúf, Nina Segal and Roy Williams. Chris is enlarging the creative family around the Rose, appointing new partners and advisers including Lucian Msamati as an Associate Artist, Poltergeist as an Associate Company and this year’s recipient of the Peter Hall Emerging Artists Fellowship, Layla Madanat.
2 - 25 September 2021
World Premiere – A Rose Original Production
Rose Theatre and Francesca Moody Productions
'Think of it like carbon offsetting, except for morals.'
An unmissable new thriller from the Olivier Award-winning producer of Fleabag and Baby Reindeer to open the Rose’s 2021/22 season. Written by fast rising talent Alys Metcalf (You Only Live Forever, Unearthed) and directed by Christopher Haydon.
When Niala arranges to meet celebrated charity leader Ben in the bar of a London hotel for career advice, their evening unfolds into something far less professional. As the weather closes in and secrets start to surface, the consequences of their choices leave them nowhere to hide.
A gripping encounter that takes place over the course of one stormy night, Leopards is a play about the image we construct of ourselves and what it truly means to be good.
More info here.
4 - 20 November 2021
World Premiere - A Rose Original Production
From the director of My Brilliant Friend (National Theatre transfer, 2019) and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin (West End transfer, 2019), comes the world premiere of Colin Teevan’s (The Emperor, Doctor Faustus, Rebellion, Das Boot) The Seven Pomegranate Seeds.
Seven contemporary stories grounded in prominent, mythical origins.
Persephone, Hypsipyle, Medea, Alcestis, Phaedra, Creusa and Demeter: the women of Euripides' plays are reimagined as people of today in an unexpected fusion of celebrity, inappropriate desires, historical police investigations and missing children.
A severed maternal bond threads each story together, charting a journey through rage and redemption, towards a compelling conclusion.
Rose Associate Artist, Melly Still (My Brilliant Friend, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Tony and Olivier nominee for Coram Boy), returns to the Rose to direct and design Colin Teevan’s haunting monologue cycle in this unflinching, witty production.
More info here.
3 December 2021 - 3 January 2022
New Version - A Rose Original Production
A cast of Rose Youth Theatre members and professional actors to be announced
On her eighteenth birthday, Bella learns that her father is the victim of a terrible curse. She sets out across the mountains to a mysterious valley, determined to face the Beast who condemned her father. Instead, she finds a community confronting its own sorrows with love, laughter and hope. In a race to learn the truth, Bella must question everything she’s been told and find humanity in the least expected places.
One of the oldest fairy tales, Beauty and the Beast is about the power of youth to see beyond prejudice. In a sumptuous new version written by Ciaran McConville (The Snow Queen, Hansel & Gretel, Alice in Winterland), with music and lyrics by Eamonn O’Dwyer (Twelfth Night & Henry V at the Rose, The Comedy of Errors, Romeo & Juliet & Julius Caesar Re-imagined at RSC) and directed by Lucy Morrell (The Creature [Frankenstein Retold], 1984, Treasure Island), experience this beloved story as you’ve never seen it before, promising song, spectacle and a big, beating heart.
26 February – 19 March 2022
A Rose Original Production with Alexandra Palace and in association with Oxford Playhouse
'If you can’t find a husband in Bath, you won’t find one anywhere.'
Jeff James (La Musica at Young Vic) and James Yeatman's bold and brilliant adaptation, first seen at the Royal Exchange Theatre in 2017, brings all the sharp observation and quick wit of Jane Austen’s novel to the stage, without a bonnet in sight.
When Captain Wentworth proposed to Anne Elliot eight years ago, he was penniless and had only love and ambition to offer. Persuaded out of accepting his proposal by her family, Anne’s never quite got over her first love.
But now Wentworth is back. Rich, successful and single, the handsome Captain has been transformed into a serious catch. When circumstances bring the two face to face again, Anne's forced to confront the past. As old wounds reopen, will Wentworth forgive Anne for rejecting him, and will Anne finally learn to trust her desires?
Austen's romantic comedy is riotously reinvented for the twenty-first century with an explosive foam party and a soundtrack of Frank Ocean, Dua Lipa and Cardi B.
More info here.
23 April - 14 May 2022
New Version - A Rose Original Production
'Now hear the tale of the trial for the Governor’s child
To establish the rightful mother
Through the legendary test of the Chalk Circle'
Bertolt Brecht’s epic tale about justice and humanity is propelled into the present day, in a new version by Steve Waters (The Last King of Scotland, Limehouse, Temple) with original songs by Michael Henry (Barber Shop Chronicles, Mr Burns, They Drink it in the Congo).
In a refugee camp, a fight breaks out over lost land. To seek resolution, a singer tells the fable of ‘The Chalk Circle’: in the midst of a bloody revolution, a servant girl risks all to raise the abandoned child of the Governor and his wife. Years later, when the Governor’s wife returns seeking her son, a rogue judge turns justice on its head. Can the test of the Chalk Circle determine which of the two women is the boy’s real mother?
This production, developed in association with MGC, is directed by the Rose’s Artistic Director Christopher Haydon as part of his debut season and is the first major London production of Brecht’s tragicomic masterpiece for 25 years.
More info here.
9 June 2021 - Rose Circle members
16 June 2021 - Rose Loyalty Card holders
18 June 2021 - General onsale
To sign up for priority booking as a Rose Circle member, click here.
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27-31 October 2021
World Premiere - A Tall Stories production
A stellar new show based on the book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler
On a far-off planet, Smeds and Smoos can’t be friends. So when a young Smed and Smoo fall in love and zoom off into space together, how will their families get them back?
Music, laughs and interplanetary adventures for everyone aged 3 and up, from Tall Stories – the company that brought you The Gruffalo and Room on the Broom live on stage.
24 March - 9 April 2022
Jonathan Church Theatre Productions and Global Creatures present
The Old Vic and Bristol Old Vic production
"'Stories are wild creatures', the monster said. 'When you let them loose, who knows what havoc they might wreak?'"
Patrick Ness’s piercing novel A Monster Calls is brought vividly to life in the Olivier award-winning production by visionary director Sally Cookson.
Thirteen year-old Conor and his mum have managed just fine since his dad moved away. But now his mum is sick and not getting any better. His grandmother won’t stop interfering and the kids at school won’t look him in the eye.
Then, one night, Conor is woken by something at his window. A monster has come walking. It’s come to tell Conor tales from when it walked before. And when it’s finished, Conor must tell his own story and face his deepest fears.
From the critically acclaimed bestseller, A Monster Calls offers a dazzling insight into love, life and healing.
This adaptation is suitable for adults and children aged 10+
17 – 29 May 2022
Kenny Wax Productions
The international smash hit musical SIX makes its royal return to Kingston!
From Tudor Queens to Pop Princesses, the six wives of Henry VIII take to the mic to tell their tales, remixing five hundred years of historical heartbreak into an 80-minute celebration of 21st century girl power. These Queens may have green sleeves but their lipstick is rebellious red.