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Spring / Summer 2023 Shows Announced

Background: a blurred collage of square artwork from shows being performed at the Northcott Theatre in spring and summer 2023. Foreground: white text reads: 'New shows announced'

We’ve announced a huge new season of events at our Northcott and Barnfield theatres for January to August 2023:

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Season Highlights

Experience inventive comedy and drama at the Northcott

Henry Lewis and Jonathan Sayer, the comedy geniuses behind Olivier Award-winning The Play That Goes Wrong (West End) and The Goes Wrong Show (BBC 1), kick-off our comedy season with Edinburgh Fringe sell-out Mind Mangler: Member of the Tragic Circle (30 Jan – 1 Feb, Northcott).

In April, Mark Gatiss (The League of Gentlemen (BBC 1)) directs Ian Hallard’s (The Boys in the Band (West End)) heartfelt-yet-hilarious celebration of queer life The Way Old Friends Do (24 – 29 April, Northcott), a new comedy about the world’s first ABBA-drag tribute band.

Moving to drama, The Faction strip back William Shakespeare’s Macbeth (20 – 21 February, Northcott) to its emotional core in their daring reimagining of the Scottish play. Audiences will be on the edge-of-their-seats watching James Milton and Paul Morrissey explore the shocking truths behind Guernsey’s paranormal histories in When Darkness Falls (Tue 7 – Sat 11 March, Northcott). The next week, Blackeyed Theatre return to our theatre donning their deerstalkers in new mystery Sherlock Holmes: The Valley of Fear (13 – 15 March, Northcott).

Looking forward to Summer, Laura Main (Call the Midwife (BBC 1)) leads a star-studded cast in the new adaptation of iconic beauty salon comedy-drama Steel Magnolias (Wed 10 – Sat 13 May, Northcott). In June, the farcical Jane Austen retelling Pride & Prejudice* (*Sort Of) (12 – 17 June, Northcott) is followed by director Michael Cabot’s (Absurd Person Singular (London Classic Theatre)) bold new take on Mike Leigh’s kitchen sink black comedy Abigail’s Party (Tue 20 – Sat 24 June, Northcott).

Enjoy family favourites across Exeter during the school holidays

Younger audiences are spoilt for choice at the Northcott and Barnfield during spring and summer breaks next year with beautifully crafted stage adaptations of stories they know and love as well as some intriguing new tales.

Our family season starts in February half-term with Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s The Smartest Giant in Town (14 –19 February, Northcott). This show is the first of several Donaldson and Scheffler adaptations coming to our theatre over the next year: all ages will enjoy animal-themed stories this Easter in Tales from Acorn Wood (13 –15 April, Northcott); everyone’s favourite dragon Zog (5 – 7 May, Northcott) touches down at the Northcott again following sell-out performances of Zog and the Flying Doctors last Summer; in June, Olivier Award-nominated theatre company Tall Stories (Room on the Broom) reimagine The Snail and the Whale (27 – 28 June, Northcott).

This Easter at the Barnfield, families can take a magical live music journey through countryside fables and wild nature stories in The Oak, the Ash and the Standing Stones (5 April, Barnfield), as well as experience new twists on Tales from a Thousand and One Nights (6 – 8 April, Barnfield).

At the tail-end of the season, South West-based theatre company The Wardrobe Ensemble adapt Judith Kerr’s endearing Mog the Forgetful Cat (16 – 18 June, Barnfield), and the Northcott host a South West-exclusive performance of Disney’s new musical stage adaptation of Winnie the Pooh (22 – 23 August, Northcott), first performed in New York last year.

Exciting work by local artists showcased at the Barnfield

We re-opened the city centre Barnfield Theatre in September, aiming to stage events for and with local artists and communities.

In March, South West-based theatre company Beyond Face, co-creators of September’s celebrated The Story of Us cultural festival at the Barnfield, perform Bigger Than Lyrics (15 – 16 March, Barnfield), a brand-new story shaped as a visual concept album.

Following Robin Hood, their first creative collaboration with our theatre, Exeter’s Le Navet Bete return this summer with their absolutely riotous variety show Extravaganza (7 – 9 July, Barnfield). Expect outrageous stunts, slapstick silliness and questionable acrobatics.

also coming up this season

Internationally in-demand choreographer James Wilton gets the our dance season underway with the kaleidoscopic The Four Seasons (8 February, Northcott). In May, former Northcott Associate Company Richard Chappell Dance celebrates its 10th anniversary with the mesmerising Hot House (15 May, Northcott). The next month, Ballet Cymru return to our theatre with its family fairy tale adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Little Red Riding Hood & The Three Little Pigs (1 – 2 June, Northcott), from the author’s celebrated Revolting Rhymes poetry collection.

English Touring Opera perform a trio of Italian-sung classics Giulio Cesare (25 May, Northcott), Lucrezia Borgia (26 May, Northcott) and Il Viaggio a Reims (27 May, Northcott).

Musical fans can catch Moulin Rouge celebration Come What May (18 May, Northcott), starring Strictly Come Dancing‘s Robin Windsor, as well as Dreamcoat Stars (3 June, Northcott), featuring past Josephs putting on their technicolour dreamcoats once again to perform classic hits from Broadway and the West End.

We’re are also hosting superb stand-up nights out across Exeter this spring with Soccer AM and Ted Lasso’s Lloyd Griffith (17 February, Northcott), I’m A Celebrity favourite Babatunde Aléshé (12 March, Barnfield), Rhys James (17 March, Northcott), Russell Kane (24 March, Great Hall), Frankie Boyle (25 March, Great Hall) and Gary Meikle (23 April, Barnfield).

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