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Mikron Theatre celebrates 50 years with new tour of Raising Agents

James Mclean Hannah Bainbridge Alice McKenna Thomas Cotran by Liz Baker
Cast James Mclean, Hannah Bainbridge, Alice McKenna and Thomas Cotran. Photo by Liz Baker

Mikron Theatre has announced a revival of its hugely successful production of Raising Agents.

The company will celebrate 50 years of touring with Maeve Larkin’s (Best Foot Forward, Mikron Theatre) play about the Women’s Institute.

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Featuring music written by Mikron’s Marsden neighbours, the acclaimed folk duo O’Hooley and Tidow (Gentleman Jack), the anniversary tour will start at Marsden Mechanics Hall on the 7 April and will tour around the UK by road and river until 22 October.

The cast features Hannah Bainbridge, Thomas Cotran, Alice McKenna and James McLean while Rachel Gee directs with design by Celia Perkins. Rebekah Hughes is the musical director and arranger.

Raising Agents tells the story of Bunnington WI. A bit down-at-heel, with memberships dwindling, it means they can barely afford the hall, let alone a decent speaker. So, when a PR guru becomes a member, the women are glad of new blood.

Initially, the milk of WI kindness begins to sour when she re-brands them as the Bunnington Bunnies. They are hopping.

With stakes higher than a five-tiered cake stand, a battle ensues for the very soul of Bunnington, perhaps the WI itself!

On the threshold of one century into the next, this tale of hobbyists and lobbyists asks how much we should know our past or how much we should let go of it.

Playwright Maeve Larkin said: “I am so thrilled that Mikron Theatre will be restaging Raising Agents for their 50th Anniversary tour. As with the WI’s old paradoxical motto ‘Grave and Gay’, it aims to transcend the sum of its parts by celebrating the timeless principles of community, activism and sisterhood.”

Director Rachel Gee added: “To direct for Mikron in our 50th year of touring, with such a brilliant show and team, is an honour and a pleasure. The WI is such an incredible story to share, and I know everyone will love the tales, trials and tribulations of the WI.”

Raising Agents will tour alongside the premiere of Lindsay Rodden’s new play Red Sky At Night.

For more information on Raising Agents and Red Sky At Night and tickets, visit mikron.org.uk


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