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Chichester Festival Theatre announces opening productions for 60th anniversary season

Our Generation (Photography by Sorted)

Chichester Festival Theatre has announced the opening productions for its 60th anniversary season.

New plays by Kate Mosse and Alecky Blythe will open the Festival in 2022.

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The Taxidermist’s Daughter by Kate Mosse will open in April, directed by Róisín McBrinn. The thrilling Gothic mystery set in and around historic Chichester is based on her novel of the same name. The production is designed by Paul Wills, with casting by Charlotte Sutton

Alecky Blythe’s Our Generation, a co-production with the National Theatre, opens the Minerva Theatre season in April after a run at the National from February. Created from five years of interviews with 12 young people from all four corners of the UK, Our Generation is a captivating portrait of their teenage years as they journey into adulthood.

The cast is Dee Ahluwalia, Joe Bolland, Anna Burnett, Anushka Chakravarti, Debbie Chazen, Gavi Singh Chera, Rachelle Diedericks, Hasan Dixon, Hélder Fernandes, Sarita Gabony, Conor Gormally, Alex Jarrett, Callum Mardy, Poppy Shepherd and Stephanie Street

Our Generation will have set design by Vicki Mortimer, costume design by Kinnetia Isidore, video design by Akhila Krishnan, lighting design by Zoe Spurr, sound design by Paul Arditti, movement direction by Carrie-Anne Ingrouille, music composition, production & direction by DJ Walde, dramaturgy by Sebastian Born and casting by Charlotte Sutton.

Finally, Stephen Beresford’s new play The Southbury Child, directed by Nicholas Hytner with a cast led by Alex Jennings. A co-production with The Bridge Theatre, the piece will play at Chichester in June before its London run

Chichester Festival Theatre has also announced its production of South Pacific will visit Manchester and London next year ahead of a UK tour.

The full Festival 2022 season will be announced next February. For now, you can visit cft.org.uk for more information and tickets.

Artistic Director Daniel Evans and Executive Director Kathy Bourne said: “The prospect of Chichester Festival Theatre’s 60th anniversary season is a truly joyous one. This Theatre, built by the community, for the community, has been at the heart of West Sussex cultural life since its inception.

“It was here, in 1962, that Laurence Olivier established the nucleus of the National Theatre company that opened at the Old Vic the following year; so it’s especially appropriate that, 60 years on, we begin our Minerva season with a co-production with the National. We are thrilled to be introducing Alecky Blythe’s engrossing verbatim work to Chichester audiences with her new play, Our Generation.

“And what could be more appropriate for our 60th anniversary curtain raiser in the Festival Theatre than a new play by an internationally best-selling writer with Chichester in her very bones? Not only has Kate Mosse been intimately connected with CFT since childhood, her thrilling and timely play The Taxidermist’s Daughter is set in historic Chichester itself. We are equally delighted that Róisín McBrinn makes her directorial debut here.

“The importance of forging new partnerships has been given greater impetus by the vicissitudes of the pandemic, so we relish the opportunity for Chichester audiences to see the world premiere of Stephen Beresford’s new play The Southbury Child, which brings Nicholas Hytner and Alex Jennings back to Chichester for the first time since the mid-1980s, in a co-production with The Bridge Theatre.

“We are always delighted to be able to share work made in Chichester beyond the borders of Sussex, and we’re proud to be working with our friends at Sadler’s Wells and many other regional theatres to bring Rodgers & Hammerstein’s beloved musical South Pacific to wider audiences across the country.

“The full Festival 2022 season will be announced next February, along with a roster of special digital and community events to mark a momentous year for our Theatre and city.”

Picture: Our Generation (Photography by Sorted)

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