Friday 21 October 2016

Preview: James and the Giant Peach at Newcastle Northern Stage

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A Peach of a Dahl Classic to get
Giant Staging in Newcastle

James and the Giant Peach
Newcastle Northern Stage
Saturday 19th November –  Saturday 31st December 2016

Adapted for the stage by David Wood
Directed by Mark Calvert

“We are about to visit the most marvellous places and see the most wonderful things!” Ladybird in James and the Giant Peach

From the team that created The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (NETG Review), this year’s Northern Stage festive production is David Woods’ adaptation of Roald Dahl’s much-loved classic, James and the Giant Peach to mark 100 years since the birth of the world’s number one storyteller.

A show that will capture the imagination of the whole family, Dahl’s first novel for children tells the story of a lonely little boy who escapes in a giant peach after a magical encounter and finds he’s capable of much more than he ever imagined thanks to the new friends he meets along the way.

Adapted for the stage by David Wood OBE and directed by Mark Calvert, this new Northern Stage production will be designed by the ever-inventive Rhys Jarman (Institute, Gecko), with original music inspired by big bands and swinging Broadway musicals of the 1940s and 50s by Jeremy Bradfield performed live by the 14 strong cast, choreography by former Phoenix Dance Theatre member, Martin Hylton and lighting by Colin Grenfell (The Tempest, Improbable/Northern Stage).

Director Mark Calvert says, “I’ve always wanted to direct a Roald Dahl story. As a child I saw Rik Mayall read George’s Marvellous Medicine and from that moment I was in. The characters Roald Dahl draws and the situations they’re put in are packed full of imagination, darkness and magic. He really gets what it is to be a child, and how the world and adults look through children’s eyes.

“James and the Giant Peach is a massive show which deserves to be on a massive stage, so for the first time in Northern Stage’s history we’re using both of our stages combined into one huge space to tell one story. It’s so exciting to be working on this scale, taking the audience on an epic adventure that deals with being lonely and discovering how important friends and family are, which is not a bad tale to tell at Christmas time.”
The cast includes four members of The Letter Room – the first company to come out of Northern Stage’s NORTH programme, designed to support and develop young talent in the region: Stan Hodgson (Five Feet in Front, The Letter Room) as James; Alice Blundell (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Northern Stage); Michael Blair (Mr Scratch, Northern Stage); and Maria Crocker (Jumping Puddles, Open Clasp/Frantic Assembly). They are joined by Clara Darcy (Brassed Off, York Theatre Royal & national tour), Tim Dalling (Up and Out, Christmas Sprout, Northern Stage), Jeremy Bradfield (the Wizard in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Northern Stage) and Lana Walker, a recent graduate of Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, making her professional debut at Northern Stage, plus a chorus of performance students from Newcastle College.
Michael Blair - Aunt Sponge/Earthworm
Alice Blundell - Aunt Spiker/ Mrs Trotter/TV reporter/Captain
Jeremy Bradfield - Tour Guide/Mr Trotter
Maria Crocker - Centipede
Tim Dalling - Old Green Grasshopper/Old Man
Clara Darcy - Miss Spider
Stan Hodgson - James
Lana Walker – Ladybird
Creative team:
Mark Calvert – Director
Rebecca Frecknall - Associate Director
Rhys Jarman - Designer
Colin Grenfell – Lighting designer
Jeremy Bradfield – Composer/Performer
Nick John Williams – Sound Designer
Martin Hylton – Movement Director
Meghan Doyle - Assistant Director
Blue (Preview) performances: £12 adult | £10 child
Green performances: £16 adult | £10 child
Orange performances: £18 adult | £12 child
All Welcome. Recommended ages 5-11 years
Tickets are now on sale at or call the box office on 0191 230 5151.

If you require a ticket for children under 12 months old, please contact our box office on 0191 230 5151.

For school group bookings please contact our box office 0191 230 5151 or email Ruth 

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