October 2019

16 October 2019

Exeter Northcott Theatre announces Bang Bang! – new play by John Cleese blending French farce and Fawlty Towers

Bang Bang! a new farce from comedy legend John Cleese (based on Monsieur Chasse! by Georges Feydeau) – is set to open at the Northcott next spring.

Exeter Northcott Theatre and Dermot McLaughlin Productions are co-producing the show – described as a delicious combination of French Farce and Fawlty Towers.

Bang Bang! is directed by Northcott Artistic Director & Chief Executive Daniel Buckroyd and opens at the Northcott on 6th February before touring until May.

The cast includes Only Fools and Horses star Tessa Peake-Jones, Tony Gardner, of comedy duo Struck off and Die, and Coronation Street’s Wendi Peters.

Tessa Peake-Jones, Tony Gardner and Wendi Peters (left to right) 

The production tells the story of Leontine, a respectable society lady, who discovers that she’s been hoodwinked by her husband, Duchotel, who’s always pretending to go hunting but really chasing after other ‘prey’.

She vows to take revenge on the philanderer but, while Duchotel’s away, his lifelong friend comes calling and he’s on the hunt too.

Audiences discover whether Leontine gets caught in his sights or instead sets a trap of her own.

Secrets unravel as the devilish Duchotel finds himself snared in a door-slamming, trouser-dropping, balcony-climbing night of chaos set amidst the stylish apartments of Paris.

Daniel Buckroyd, Artistic Director & Chief Executive at Exeter Northcott Theatre, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with this fantastic team to launch this first UK tour of Bang Bang! here at the Northcott Theatre; partly because it’s such a funny script and we’ve assembled such a great cast, but also because regional producing venues are the life-blood of UK theatre – developing talent, growing audiences, providing the beating heart of a vibrant creative regional city like Exeter – so we’re proud to be flying the flag for theatre ‘Made in Devon’ across the country.”

John Cleese added: “I am delighted to be working with Exeter Nothcott Theatre and Dermot Mclaughlin to bring Bang Bang! to stages across the country with such a talented cast.

“Farce is my greatest love – Fawlty Towers consisted of 12 farces – and I think UK audiences will love this hilarious classic.”

Tessa Peake-Jones became a household name with her role as Raquel in the iconic comedy Only Fools and Horses. Her extensive stage work encompasses the National Theatre and RSC, recent credits include The Winslow Boy and Shirley Valentine.

Tony Gardner first made his name in comedy as part of the award-winning comedy duo Struck off and Die. Since then he has appeared on TV in roles ranging from My Parents are Aliens to Last Tango in Halifax and on stage in Alan Ayckbourn’s classic Bedroom Farce.

Wendi Peters is most widely known for her role as Cilla Battersby in Coronation Street and is currently appearing in the West End smash-hit musical Big.

Tickets are on sale to members until 26th October when they will go on general sale.

Dermot McLaughlin Productions, in association with Farces Galore Ltd presents the Exeter Northcott Production of Bang Bang!.

The show is directed by Daniel Buckroyd with design from David Shields and lighting from David W Kidd.

Book tickets and see more information here


04 October 2019

Exeter Northcott Futures programme puts talent development centre stage

Exeter Northcott Theatre has today unveiled a comprehensive, new programme of funding and support to develop theatre-making talent in Exeter.

The Exeter Northcott Futures project offers professional development for individual artists at the start of their careers, tailored packages of support for regionally-based companies at a critical moment in their development and a launch pad for the next generation of producers.

The ambitious scheme, developed following an extensive consultation with theatre makers across the region by Artistic Director & Chief Executive Daniel Buckroyd, aims to build on the Northcott’s long tradition of supporting new talent.

Daniel Buckroyd devised the initiative in response to demand from theatre makers across the region for a more opportunities to create and present new work. 

He said: “Exeter has an extraordinary track record of nurturing creative talent, particularly in theatre and the performing arts, with many actors, directors, designers, writers, producers and technicians having started their careers in the city, and a number of high profile theatre companies having their roots in Devon.

“However, it’s become clear to me from talking to theatre makers based in Exeter and the surrounding region, that there’s currently a real lack of the opportunities they need to grow their work in the South West.

“At the Northcott we believe it’s vital that Exeter remains a place where people come to make amazing theatre, not just a stopping off point for touring shows made elsewhere. Which is why we’re delighted to be working with a number of the city’s other arts organisations to think about what we can do collectively to support artists, and why today, as part of that, we’re launching Exeter Northcott Futures, a comprehensive package of new talent development opportunities that will put the next generation of theatre-making talent centre stage at the Northcott.” 

The three-tier programme spanning eighteen months is now open for applications with a deadline of 28 October.

The Early Career Artists Programme is a six-month series of workshops, masterclasses and mentoring, delivered by members of the Northcott Theatre team and other established industry professionals, and has been designed to kick-start participants’ career development.

This programme is open to performers, directors, designers and other makers, and has been created to provide opportunities to gain new skills and knowledge, develop new collaborations and create and present new work in Exeter.

The Associate Company Programme runs for eighteen months and provides a tailored package of support and resources to help emerging South West-based companies realise an important creative ambition or deliver a key strategic development.

This will include one company focusing specifically on a performance with a digital element.

The Producers Programme offers a six-month programme designed to provide a practical introduction to the role of the producer and the specific skills/knowledge involved in mounting a successful production.

This will explore making work at a range of scales and within both the commercial and subsidised sectors.

It offers access to current Northcott projects and opportunities to collaborate with Early Career Artists and Associate Companies.

Two part-time producer roles have been advertised, one of which will support the three programmes.

Future plans include adding a Theatre Writers Group and Technical Theatre Apprenticeships.

Dom Jinks, Exeter Culture Director, added: “The Futures programme is an exciting new programme for the Exeter Northcott Theatre and the city.

“It very much addresses a city need to provide more progression and experience in the professional cultural sector for new and emerging talent. This has been identified within the new cultural strategy for Exeter and I am delighted to see this programme.”

For details of the two producer roles, please see the jobs section of our website.