Today we announce our 50th anniversary season! Tickets for all the newly announced shows will be going on sale to Centre Stage Members at 10am on Saturday 20 November 2021 and on general sale at 10am on Saturday 27 November 2021.
Robert Hastie, Artistic Director of Sheffield Theatres, said:
“It’s the Crucible and Studio Theatre’s 50th birthday and we’re celebrating by announcing a whole year of shows. Both spaces have always been synonymous with innovation and collaboration, sparking new ideas and forging friendships with new audiences. We look forward to lighting up our stages with a bold and ambitious programme, championing new work and partnering with brilliant creatives and companies.
Anna Karenina, directed by Anthony Lau, kicks off the year in style with a powerful, playful new production of Helen Edmundson’s groundbreaking adaptation.
The Crucible season continues with Steve Waters’ The Contingency Plan. First staged in 2009, this double bill was widely celebrated as theatre’s most successful attempt to date to grapple with mounting concern about climate change. Today, with the global emergency brought ever more sharply into focus, Steve updates the searing Whitehall thriller Resilience and the touching family drama On the Beach, to make this revival a compelling, up-to-the-minute response to the greatest challenge of our time. Caroline Steinbeis and Chelsea Walker bring these fearless, funny, frightening plays to the stage.
Opening the Studio season is Human Nurture by Ryan Calais Cameron, a brilliant writer whose new work explores the impact of racial injustice on two young men brought up as brothers. We’re delighted to be working with Rob Watt and the team at Theatre Centre on a project that spends half of each week performing in local schools and half in our Studio.
Next, we collaborate with John Rwothomack’s new theatre company Roots Mbili Theatre to present Far Gone. Already an established theatre maker, John was part of the inaugural cohort of The Bank, our talent development programme, and we’re honoured to be launching Roots Mbili’s inaugural production. Far Gone is the perfect vehicle to showcase John’s talents as a writer and performer.
The centre of our year is a massive project that unifies all three of our spaces in one big celebratory theatrical experiment. In Rock Paper Scissors, the same company of actors performs concurrently in all three of our theatres. When you exit on one stage, you enter on another. Associate Artist Chris Bush has penned three brand new plays that can be watched on their own or as a trilogy. Taken together they are three competing visions of the future, a witty and heartfelt exploration of how to use the buildings the past has left us and remake the landscape of our northern cities. Rock Paper Scissors is without doubt the most ambitious project Sheffield Theatres has ever staged.
In another big birthday, 2022 sees us celebrate 10 years of Sheffield People’s Theatre, our intergenerational theatre company. Over the years we’ve welcomed hundreds of members, of all ages, to perform on our stages. I’m thrilled that new writing powerhouse the Stockroom will help us to realise the next People’s Theatre production, How A City Can Save the World.
Being part of Ramps on the Moon has been one of our proudest achievements over the last six years and it’s fantastic that we get to lead the next Ramps production in our birthday year. I’ll be directing Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, before the show heads out on tour, in what promises to be a joyous show with a big inclusive heart.
The autumn continues with Dario Fo’s 20th century classic Accidental Death of An Anarchist in the Studio, which is adapted by award-winning stage and screen comedy writer Tom Basden. I’ve always wanted to bring this razor-sharp satire, Fo’s greatest play, to the Sheffield stage, and this will be its first UK production since the great master’s death in 2016, and the last new version to receive his blessing.
It’s an essential part of Sheffield Theatres mission to be a platform and a launchpad for local talent. Following the success of 2021’s Together Season Festival, which dedicated the Crucible stage to the work of Sheffield’s artists and companies, we will once curate a programme of work drawn from open submissions to a volunteer panel of theatre makers and audiences.
And we end our anniversary year with the triumphant return of Standing at the Sky's Edge, the epic musical by Chris Bush and Richard Hawley. We were overwhelmed with the reaction in March 2019, and so honoured by the way audiences have really taken the show to their hearts. The show, which takes us through sixty years of Britain’s recent history through the lives and stories of Sheffielders living in Park Hill, is coproduced with Various Productions and the National Theatre, and we’re delighted that following its run in the Crucible for Christmas 2022, it will play at the National’s Olivier Theatre in 2023.”
Dan Bates, Chief Executive of Sheffield Theatres, said:
“I’m delighted that we are celebrating 50 years of theatre-making in Sheffield at the Crucible by announcing work on all three of our stages.
After the last 20 months, it is so good to have something so special to celebrate. Not a day goes by when I don’t look at the majesty of the Crucible and think of the hundreds of workers across the city that paid for this incredible building. A building that has welcomed millions of people through the doors, where young talented actors had their debut, where snooker champions have been created and where theatre makers have cut their teeth. I’m excited about the next 50 years, about the next set of writers, directors, casts and creatives that are nurtured here.
Today we are talking about the work on our stages, welcoming audiences for a year of shows like no other. We can’t wait to share more ways in which we’ll celebrate with our communities, audiences and staff over the next 12 months.
The Crucible is, and always has been, a true melting pot of ideas. As we celebrate the pride and passion of everyone who has made their mark so far, we look ahead to all that’s still to come, to everyone we’ll welcome and the theatre we’ll make together – we’re looking forward to what the future holds.”
Sheffield Theatres Productions
Rock / Paper / Scissors – three new plays by Chris Bush: The centrepiece 50th Anniversary celebrations will see all three Sheffield spaces – The Crucible, The Studio and Lyceum Theatres – unite to stage playwright Chris Bush’s new trilogy of plays Rock (Crucible), Paper (Lyceum), Scissors (Studio). Directed by Artistic Director Robert Hastie and Associate Artistic Director Anthony Lau, with a further director to be announced, three interlinked but standalone plays will tell the story of Sheffield’s oldest scissor manufacturer and the three generations who go to war over what happens to the factory site. In a theatrical first, the same cast perform in the Crucible, Lyceum and Studio simultaneously, dashing between scenes, when a character exits one stage, they arrive on another.
Tuesday 14 June – Saturday 2 July 2022.
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy in a new adaptation by Helen Edmundson: Launching a yearlong season of programming celebrating 50 years of the iconic Crucible Theatre, this bold new production of Tolstoy’s epic masterpiece about desire, duty and defiance is directed by RTYDS Associate Artistic Director Anthony Lau.
Saturday 5 – Saturday 26 February 2022.
The Contingency Plan – On The Beach and Resilience by Steve Waters: Next in the Crucible is two new productions of the timely climate change double bill The Contingency Plan,updated to reflect the ongoing climate emergency. On The Beach is directed by Chelsea Walker and Resilience is directed by Caroline Steinbeis.
Friday 11 March – Saturday 2 April 2022.
How a City Can Save the World: Celebrating 10 years of Sheffield People’s Theatre with a new play. Currently in development with Stockroom, more information to be announced.
Wednesday 3 – Saturday 6 August 2022.
Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare: Sheffield Theatres Artistic Director Robert Hastie will adapt and direct Ramps on the Moon’s new production of William Shakespeare’s much-loved comedy. A pioneering initiative committed to putting D/deaf and disabled artists and audiences at the centre of their work, every performance features the use of integrated creative sign language, audio description and captioning. After a run at the Crucible Theatre the production will tour to Leeds Playhouse, Birmingham Rep, Nottingham Playhouse, New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich, Theatre Royal Stratford East and Salisbury Playhouse.
Friday 9 – Saturday 24 September 2022.
The Together Season Festival: After a successful launch in 2021, the 50th anniversary year will see the return of Sheffield Theatre’s The Together Season Festival. The festival forms part of Sheffield Theatres' initiatives to champion new work and give a platform to the talent of local freelance artists and companies. Artists from across the region were invited to submit productions to feature in the programme, with the panel, led by RTYDS Associate Artistic Director AnthonyLau, working together over a number of weeks to create the festival line-up.
Thursday 20 – Saturday 29 October 2022.
Standing at the Sky’s Edge by Richard Hawley and Chris Bush: The Crucible Theatre’s 50thanniversary programming will round off in December 2022 with a celebratory return of the hit musical Standing at the Sky’s Edge revived by Artistic Director Robert Hastie, prior to a run at the National Theatre in 2023.
Saturday 10 December 2022 – Saturday 21 January 2023.
Human Nurture by Ryan Calais Cameron: To celebrate Sheffield’s intimate and versatile Studio Theatre’s 50thanniversary, the space will continue its commitment to new writing and compelling voices. Human Nurture will be a flagship school’s project and will play a mixture of dates in both the Studio Theatre and local Sheffield schools, including The Hayfield School and Handsworth Grange Community College, during its run. The project is led by director Rob Watt and the Theatre Centre.
Wednesday 26 January – Saturday 12 February 2022.
Far Gone by John Rwothomack: originally devised in Sheffield Theatres’ Making Room scratch night, Far Gone was originally scheduled to play the Studio in 2020 but postponed due to the pandemic, Far Gone is a profoundly moving story of a young boy’s journey from childhood innocence to child soldier. Playwright John Rwothomack’s new theatre company Roots Mbili Theatre coproduces this thrilling new play with Sheffield Theatres. Directed by Mojisola Elufowoju.
Thursday 17 – Saturday 26 February 2022.
Accidental Death of an Anarchist by Dario Fo, adapted by Tom Basden: revival of Dario Fo’s riotous 20th century classic adapted by BAFTA nominated comedy writer Tom Basden.
Friday 23 September – Saturday 15 October 2022.
Sheffield Theatres also welcomes a host of fantastic touring productions adding to their 2022 season.
Visiting Sheffield Theatres
The Russian State Ballet of Siberia present Swan Lake and The Nutcracker from Monday 10 – Saturday 15 January. Swan Lake, the greatest romantic ballet of all time, is brought to life by Tchaikovsky’s haunting and unforgettable score. The Nutcracker is the fantasy ballet for all the family: when midnight strikes, be swept away to a fairy-tale world where nothing is quite as it seems… Both ballets are accompanied by the Russian State Ballet live Orchestra.
Gangsta Granny comes to the Lyceum from Wednesday 19 – Saturday 22 January. It’s Friday night and Ben is staying with Granny, but what he doesn’t know is that Granny has a secret – and Friday nights are about to get more exciting than he could ever imagine, as he embarks on the adventure of a lifetime with his very own Gangsta Granny! From the acclaimed producers of Billionaire Boy and Awful Auntie comes the award-winning West End production of the story by the UK’s best-selling author for children, David Walliams.
The Da Vinci Code, the blockbuster story that captivated the world, is now an epic stage thriller and comes to the Lyceum from Tuesday 25 – Saturday 29 January. The curator of the Louvre has been brutally murdered, and alongside his body are a series of baffling codes. Follow Professor Robert Langdon, played by television favourite Nigel Harman (EastEnders, Hotel Babylon), Sophie Neveu (played by Hannah Rose Caton) and Professor Leigh Teabing, played by family favourite Danny John-Jules (Red Dwarf, Death in Paradise) as they attempt to solve the riddles, leading to the works of Leonardo Da Vinci and beyond, deep into the vault of history.
Kay Mellor’s Fat Friends The Musical returns to the Lyceum from Monday 31 January – Saturday 5 February, starring Lee Mead (Holby City, Joseph and his Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat), Sherrie Hewson (Coronation Street, Benidorm), Jessica Ellis (Hollyoaks), and direct from his acclaimed West End run in Hairspray, Les Dennis (Legally Blonde, Coronation Street). Based on the highly popular ITV series, with great new music from Nick Lloyd Webber, this hugely entertaining musical reunites our favourite foodie friends.
Next, pour yourself a cup of ambition as 9 to 5 the Musical plays in the Lyceum from Tuesday 8 – Saturday 12 February. Follow the story of three workmates pushed to boiling point by their sexist and egotistical boss. With an award-nominated score by Dolly Parton, this hilarious new production is about teaming up, standing up and taking care of business!
The National Theatre’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time returns to the Lyceum from Tuesday 15 – Saturday 19 February. Director Marianne Elliott brings Mark Haddon’s best-selling novel to thrilling life on stage. Fifteen-year-old Christopher has an extraordinary brain. He is exceptional at maths, while everyday life presents some barriers. He has never ventured alone beyond the end of his road, he detests being touched and he distrusts strangers. When he falls under suspicion for killing his neighbour’s dog, it takes him on a journey that upturns his world.
Noël Coward’s gloriously entertaining Private Lives, the inaugural show from The Nigel Havers Theatre Company, will be at the Lyceum from Tuesday 22 – Saturday 26 February. Elyot and Amanda, who were once married, find themselves on honeymoon with their new partners, in the same hotel on the French coast, admiring the view from adjoining balconies. Their initial horror quickly evaporates and soon they are sharing cocktails. Who knows what the future holds for them now… Starring Patricia Hodge and Nigel Havers.
The Play What I Wrote comes to the Lyceum from Monday 28 February – Saturday 5 March, with a mystery guest star at every performance. Hamish has written a play, an epic set in the French Revolution called ‘A Tight Squeeze for the Scarlet Pimple’. Sean, on the other hand, wants to continue with their double act. He believes that if they perform a tribute to Morecambe and Wise, Hamish’s confidence will be restored and the double act will go on. But first Sean needs to persuade a guest star to appear in the play what Hamish wrote...
In March, enter the glittering world of Dreamgirls from Tuesday 8 – Saturday 19 March. Effie, Lorrell and Deena are three talented young singers in the turbulent 1960s, a revolutionary time in American music history. Join them as they embark upon a musical rollercoaster ride through a world of fame, fortune and the ruthless realities of show business, testing their friendships to the very limit.
Northern Ballet return with another captivating show: throw caution to the wind and be led into temptation, Kenneth Tindall’s Casanova is back from Tuesday 22 – Saturday 26 March. Consumed by his desires, Casanova lived every minute in a whirlwind of scandal and decadence. But behind the mask, there was more to the man. Casanova takes you inside the heart and mind of one of the most notorious figures in history, exposing a story so sensational you won’t believe it’s real.
Then, Croft House Theatre Company present their amateur production ofCalendar Girls fromTuesday 29 March – Saturday 2 April. The death of a much loved husband prompts a group of ordinary women in a small Yorkshire Women’s Institute to do an extraordinary thing.
English Touring Opera return to the Lyceum from Monday 4 – Tuesday 5 April with two operas: La bohème and The Golden Cockerel. Labohème, by Puccini, tells the story of young love, starting on Christmas Eve in a Parisian garret. The Golden Cockerel, by Rimsky-Korsakov, is a daring satire on the last days of the Romanov empire, as explosive as it is charming.
Dinosaur World stomps its way into the Lyceum from Thursday 7 – Saturday 9 April. Grab your compass discover a pre-historic world of astonishing (and remarkably life-like) dinosaurs. Meet a host of impressive creatures, including every child’s favourite flesh-eating giant, the Tyrannosaurus Rex, a Triceratops, Giraffatitan, Microraptor and Segnosaurus! A special meet and greet after the show offers all brave explorers the chance to make a new dinosaur friend.
Out of the darkness and into the spotlight, Sheffield’s much-loved production Everybody’s Talking About Jamie returns from Monday 11 – Saturday 16 April. Jamie New is sixteen and lives on a council estate in Sheffield, but he is going to be a sensation at the school prom. From Sheffield Theatres’ original production in 2017, this fabulous musical comes home for its second run at the Lyceum.
The international smash-hit musical Six makes its royal visit to Sheffield from Tuesday 19 – Saturday 30 April. From Tudor Queens to Pop Princesses, the six wives of Henry VIII take to the mic to tell their tales, remixing five hundred years of historical heartbreak into an 80-minute celebration of 21st century girl power. Multi award-winning, with a spectacularly successful soundtrack storming charts across the globe.
Bringing to life the legendary anthems of Jim Steinman and Meat Loaf, Bat Out Of Hell rides into the Lyceum from Tuesday 3 – Saturday 7 May. Join Strat, the forever young leader of rebellious gang ‘The Lost’ as he falls in love with Raven, the beautiful daughter of the tyrannical ruler of Obsidian. This award-winning musical thunders through iconic hits including I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That), Paradise By The Dashboard Light, Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad, Dead Ringer For Love and Bat Out of Hell, in an over-the-top theatrical spectacle unlike any other.
Turn back time with The Cher Show from Tuesday 10 – Saturday 14 May.Six decades of stardom and over a hundred million records sold, Cher is the Grammy®, Oscar®, Emmy® and Golden Globe® award-winning queen of re-invention. This fiercely fabulous kick-ass new musical comes from the writer of Jersey Boys. Audiences will be spinning in the aisles to the sounds of her biggest hits. It’s time to Cher the love and believe again!
Watch out, The Gruffalo is about from Wednesday 18 – Friday 20 May 2022. Join Mouse on a daring adventure through the deep, dark wood in Tall Stories’ magical, musical adaptation of the classic picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. Songs, laughs and scary fun for children aged 3 and up and their grown-ups.
Get your thinking caps on, Cluedo opens at the Lyceum from Monday 23 – Saturday 28 May. Based on the hit film Clue and classic board game is an exciting, brand-new comedy thriller, directed by award-winning MarkBell. When Miss Scarlett, Professor Plum, Mrs Peacock, Reverend Green, Mrs. White and Colonel Mustard arrive at a party one stormy evening, they are surprised to find they have all received the same intriguing invitation from Lord Boddy…
Meet the Fantastically Great Women Who Changed The World from Tuesday 31 May – Saturday 4 June. An empowering new stage show, with characters and songs that pack a popstar punch! Celebrated dramatist Chris Bush (Sheffield Theatres’ Standing At The Sky’s Edge) and Number 1 hit songwriter Miranda Cooper (Girls Aloud, Kylie Minogue) adapt suffragette descendent Kate Pankhurst’s award-winning picture book published by Bloomsbury, produced for the stage by the company that brought you the smash hit musical Six.
Cheer on Bring It On: The Musical from Tuesday 7 – Saturday 11 June, as AmberDavies and LouisSmith star in the smash-hit Broadway Musical. Cheer-royalty and newly-crowned Squad Captain, Campbell, should be embarking on her most cheertastic senior year at Truman High School. But when she’s forced to move to the neighbouring hard-knock Jackson High, Campbell fears her life is over.
Enter the razzle-dazzle decadence of the 1920s with Chicago from Tuesday 5 – Saturday 9 July. After murdering her on-the-side lover, housewife and dancer Roxie Hart hires Chicago’s slickest criminal lawyer to transform her malicious crime into a barrage of sensational headlines. Starring Coronation Street's Faye Brookes (Dancing On Ice, Grease, Legally Blonde) as Roxie Hart, and West End star Djalenga Scott (Annie, Chicago, West Side Story) as Velma Kelly.
Journey back to the glamour of Hollywood during the roaring 20s with Singin’ in the Rain from Tuesday 19 – Saturday 23 July. Silent movie star Don Lockwood has it all, but a chance meeting with a talented young chorus girl set to steal his heart promises to change both Don, and Hollywood, forever. AndrewWright’s high-energy choreography and SimonHiglett’s sumptuous set design combine with the charm, romance and wit of one of the world’s best-loved films.
School of Rock then bursts on to the stage from Tuesday 26 July – Saturday 6 August. Andrew Lloyd Webber, the man who brought rock and romance to Broadway, is back with a new heart-stirring hit. Based on the hit film, this hilarious new musical follows Dewey Finn, a failed, wannabe rock star who decides to earn a few extra bucks by posing as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school.
Beautiful: The Carole King Musical returns to the Lyceum from Tuesday 6 – Saturday 10 September. Long before she was Carole King, the chart-topping music legend, she was an ordinary girl with an extraordinary talent. Beautiful tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit song writing team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history.
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel runs from Tuesday 13 – Saturday 17 September. Follow the story of a group of British pensioners who decide to move to a retirement hotel in India. Based on the 2004 novel These Foolish Things by novelist Deborah Moggach and the film directed by JohnMadden.
Oreo plays on Wednesday 19 January. A semi-autobiographical solo show about being a successfully educated black woman within western society, Tania Camara explores the masks we wear to put our heads above the parapet in a climate of systemic racism.
Rice is on the Studio stage from Monday 7 – Wednesday 9 March. Nisha is a young hotshot executive working for Golden Fields, Australia’s largest producer of rice. Yvette, an older Chinese migrant, has her own entrepreneurial ambitions. The two form a powerful bond as they navigate the complexities of their lives.
Next, A Partnership on Saturday 12 March, in which Ally and his partner Zach dissect what it means to be gay in the modern world. A frank, funny and heart-breaking conversation, accompanied only by a ticking clock, the shadow of internalised homophobia, and the question of whether we can – or should – be ‘normal.’
Josephine plays on Wednesday 16 March, for ages 7+. Josephine Baker, the little girl from Missouri who became an original twentieth century icon. Dancer, actor, activist, campaigner, spy and mother to the multicultural Rainbow Tribe. But, almost 50 years after her death, nobody remembers Josephine. And she just can’t allow that.
Then, Dispatches on the Red Dress on Saturday 19 March is an immersive one woman show from multi award-winning folk musician Rowan Rheingans which asks can hope for the future be found in the darkest pockets of our history?
WOLF! runs from Monday 4 – Wednesday 6 April. Beneath the Moon, under the mountains, amongst a flock of woolly sheep, Jack is bored… find out what happens when Jack cries WOLF! For ages 5+, original music and puppetry tells a tale you thought you knew, inspired by Aesop’s Fable, The Boy who Cried Wolf.
LAVA is next on Wednesday 11 May. Boy meets girl. Boy can’t talk to girl. And a small asteroid has hit the capital city. From award-winning playwright James Fritz is a funny, tender and moving new play about friendship and reconnection in the aftermath of catastrophe.
Host of Late Night Mash and as seen on Live at the Apollo and Taskmaster, Nish Kumar presents his new show Your Power, YourControl on Thursday 7 April.
The World Seniors Snooker Championship takes place from Wednesday 4 – Sunday 8 May. Joining the crowd favourites Jimmy White, Stephen Hendry and Ken Doherty will be defending champion David Lilley, Yorkshire’s Joe Johnson and Tony Drago from Malta.
The Paradis Files, a new chamber opera, plays from Wednesday 11 – Thursday 12 May. In the glittering salons of 18th-century Vienna, talented musician Maria-Theresia von Paradis is known as The Blind Enchantress. Yet behind this dazzling success story, there are dark forces at work.
And we're getting ready for...
The Big Give: Sheffield Theatres will celebrate the Crucible’s 50th anniversary with the city – bringing people and communities together to get creative. Participating in the Big Give Christmas Challenge from 30 November – 7 December, Sheffield Theatres are aiming to raise £50,000 that will help to deliver projects with their communities including a bold new Sheffield Peoples Theatre show and an intergenerational choir which will allow school children and adults living with dementia to share the joy of singing.