Despite continued funding cuts, The Theatre Chipping Norton launches a season of home-grown professional work with a production of Terrence McNally’s Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune.
In reaction to the decreasing availability of small-scale touring theatre and reductions in public funding, The Theatre Chipping Norton is swimming against the tide by embarking on a two-year programme of self-produced work. Despite the increased production costs, Artistic Director John Terry sees this as a strategic move, cementing The Theatre’s reputation as somewhere “unique and indispensable.”
Since winning the 2010 TMA Stage Newspaper Award for Outstanding Contribution to Regional Theatre, Chipping Norton’s 217 seater playhouse and arts centre has undergone a thorough strategic planning review, and emerges as a venue more creative, more diverse in its output and reaching a wider regional audience. In addition to supporting two Associate Companies – Scary Little Girls and Simple8 Theatre Company – The Theatre plans to add two straight drama productions to its existing, nationally renowned Christmas pantomime.
The first, Terrence McNally’s gritty romantic comedy, Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, plays across two weeks this September, directed by Artistic Director John Terry and starring Caroline Lawton and Marcus D’Amico in the lead roles. This will be followed by an imaginative re-staging of Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie in the spring of 2013.
“Rural and smaller theatres have a vital role to play providing arts and entertainment specifically suited for our local audiences. We don’t have to answer to anyone other than those who live around us. For us, the clearest way to achieve this is to make top-notch professional theatre here in the Cotswolds, choosing pieces that ideally suit our audience and auditorium.
In order to survive we must be remarkable, unique and essential. We must thrive as a varied receiving house, a creative hub and producing company in order to do this. We hope to draw audiences from a wider catchment area to make the journey to our eccentric and gorgeous little theatre to see top quality work.” – John Terry, Artistic Director, The Theatre Chipping Norton.