News Update: November 2023.
Three brand new fEAST shows are on the way
We may not have staged any new shows so far in 2023 but behind the scenes we have been busy. Applications for funding have been written, research and development projects have been undertaken, new plays have been commissioned and new relationships developed with artists and venues. All this effort has paid off and we are now delighted to announce an exciting programme of new work coming your way over the next few months.
First up is Little Red Riding Hood another co-production with Well Maltings. Think you know this classic fairy tale? Think again! Written by acclaimed children’s dramatist Nick Lane (T’was the Night Before Christmas / Hansel and Gretel) this is a fast moving, rib tickling show for all the family. Full of silly stories, madcap songs and ridiculous rhymes this is Little Red Riding Hood like you’ve never seen it before. The show opens at Wells Maltings on 15th December and runs there until Christmas Eve.
In February the second production in our new programme takes to the road heading for venues across the region. Written by Rob John (The Canada Boys / Rosa Mendoza) The Hollyhock Trilogy presents three strange and poignant love stories. A woman reveals an unrequited passion for her postman, an aging trapeze artist dreams of the beautiful woman who dropped him and a chance remark about hollyhocks changes the lives of two strangers for ever.
Starring Owen Evans and Dawn Finnerty these darkly funny tales of loneliness and lust are guaranteed to warm the coldest winter evening.
Finally we are proud to announce the world premier of Jeremy Page’s new play Elephant which will be touring in June. Commissioned by fEAST and supported by Arts Council England this production has been underpinned by a very successful research and development project which was generously funded by The Seagull Theatre Lowestoft. Set in a house balancing on an eroding cliff in North Norfolk Jeremy’s beautiful play tells the story of four damaged characters brought together under bizarre circumstances. As the house begins to collapse the truths that have brought these characters together and the lies that they’ve told each other become exposed.
We can’t wait to get these brilliant new shows onto stages across the region. Please come and see us!
We are aware that this exciting programme would not have been possible without the help of our many fEAST supporters. In the last few months we have been particularly grateful to Debbie Thompson at Sheringham Little Theatre, Des Reynolds at The Seagull Theatre Lowestoft and Simon Daykin at Wells Maltings.
Elephant: Research and Development
On Friday 2nd June 2023 fEAST presented extracts from Elephant at The Seagull Theatre.
In a project funded by a bursary from The Seagull four actors, (Mark Finbow, Henri Merriam, Ben Elder, Anna Buttery) director Dawn Finnerty, designer Fern Blevins and sound designer Mark Fawcett began to explore the characters, dynamics and the technical challenges of a story set in a house which is falling into the North Sea.
THEATRE AWARD NOMINATION FOR FEAST
We’re pleased as punch to announce that our 10th anniversary season has been nominated for THE DICK CONDON THEATRE AWARD 2022 by Norfolk Arts Awards.
The winners will be announced at a ceremony in Norwich on 5th November.
You can read more in this article here:
FEAST THEATRE. TEN YEARS ON.
Ten years ago, when Mandy McKenna and Rob John first discussed the idea of creating a professional theatre company based in rural Norfolk, the idea seemed far-fetched. The two former Paston College drama tutors wanted to start a company committed to presenting new plays performed by professional actors from our region, telling stories from and about Norfolk. But would they be able to find that new writing? Were there actors out there who could give their characters authentic Norfolk voices? And, most importantly, even if they could make this new ‘theatre from the East’ would anyone want to come and see it? In 2010 they decided to find out. Mandy and Rob formed fEAST Theatre and took their first show out on the road.In the past decade the company has staged seven new plays and undertaken eight regional tours.
fEAST has travelled thousands of miles and has performed in theatres, schools, dozens of village halls and once in a world famous mustard factory. And yes those audiences did come. The company has slowly won a loyal and enthusiastic following and many of their recent shows have been sell-outs. In addition to touring and performing fEAST is proud of the work they have done in helping writers new develop new work, in mentoring young actors at the start of their careers and in running educational workshops with students in schools and colleges across the region. The company has recently completed its first residency, a Christmas show which ran for 18 performances at the newly refurbished Maltings theatre at Wells. In 2019 the company were nominated for the Norfolk Arts Award for theatre.
In 2018 Mandy and Rob stepped down as co-directors of the company and handed over the reins to Artistic Director Dawn Finnerty and Associate Director Robin McLoughlin. Plans were developed for an ambitious programme of productions in 2020 to mark fEAST’s first ten years.