A beautiful box of delights in The Globe’s Winter Selection

Shakespeare’s Globe has come up with ‘the most delicious, unique and beautiful box of delights’ for the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse winter season.

Outgoing artistic director, Emma Rice, in her last season at the Globe, has called it The Winter Selection and it promises to be mouth-watering.

The season opens with Romantics Anonymous, a new musical directed by Emma Rice, with book written by Emma Rice, lyrics by Christopher Dimond, and music by Michael Kooman.

It is followed by The Secret Theatre, a new play by Anders Lustgarten, directed by Matthew Dunster, and Apocalypse Meow: Crisis is Born, a return for cabaret sensation Meow Meow with an alternative Christmas show.  

2018 brings a new production of All’s Well That Ends Well, directed by Caroline Byrne, and The Captive Queen, a reimagining of a John Dryden’s Restoration drama, directed by Barrie Rutter and co-produced with Northern Broadsides.

The winter season closes with Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons – a reimagining, created by Gyre & Gimble and recomposed by Max Richter, and the return of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Matchgirl and Other Happier Tales, adapted and directed by Emma Rice, in co-production with Bristol Old Vic.

Emma Rice, said: “I’ve always seen the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse as a little box of treats, encouraging the primal need to tell and hear stories and inviting tales and magic to unfurl beneath the flicker of the candles.

“For my final season as artistic director at the Globe, I knew I wanted to present the most delicious, unique and beautiful box of delights.

“The Winter Selection will take us to a singing chocolate factory in France, the inner sanctum of Elizabeth I’s court, the dark and dangerous world of All’s Well That Ends Well, the palaces of India, the emotional depths of Vivaldi, and the tender chaos of Meow Meow’s Christmas, before we tumble back down the rabbit hole with the return of The Little Matchgirl.”

Opening in October, Romantics Anonymous is adapted from the French-Belgian film, Les Émotifs Anonymes, written by Jean-Pierre Améris and Philippe Blasband.

The musical follows Angélique, a gifted chocolate maker inhibited by social anxiety, and Jean-René, the awkward boss of a struggling chocolate factory, in an unusual and tender love story about finding the courage to be happy.

Romantics Anonymous will be the final new production directed by Emma Rice as artistic director of the Globe. 

A new play by Anders Lustgarten, The Secret Theatre, opens in November, directed by the Globe’s associate director Matthew Dunster.

As the nation’s relationship with Europe deteriorates and civil unrest grows, Elizabeth I’s spymaster, Sir Francis Walsingham, adopts extreme tactics to keep his queen and country safe.

Set in a world of espionage, double-crossing and blackmail, The Secret Theatre asks what we are prepared to sacrifice to ensure our safety.

Anders Lustgarten is an award-winning playwright renowned for his bold approach to social and political questions.

In December, Meow Meow returns to the Globe for a Christmas show like no other, Apocalypse Meow: Crisis is Born.

This untraditional Christmas show will combine moments of hare-brained hijinks with poignant and tender reflections on loneliness, lost dreams and the apocalypse.

In a co-production with Northern Broadsides, Barrie Rutter will direct The Captive Queen, a reimagining of John Dryden’s Restoration drama Aureng-zebe (1675).

Opening next February, The Captive Queen is set in the woollen mills of the North of England in the late 20th century, but retains a flavour of Dryden’s original Mughal Indian setting.
 
An ageing Emperor and his Governor rage at the loss of their youth and beauty, while two fratricidal sons are spurred from victory in war to the warfare of love.

All four are besotted with the same captive queen. Artistic director of Northern Broadsides, Barrie Rutter, will assemble a cast of British Asian actors for this wry exploration of the folly of old age, the allure of power, and the bewildering effects of lust and desire.
 
Opening next March Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons will be created by Gyre & Gimble’s master puppeteers, with composer Max Richter’s musical reworking of the original masterpiece, newly arranged for a quintet of London’s finest musicians.

The season will close with the return of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Matchgirl and Other Happier Tales, adapted and directed by Emma Rice, in co-production with Bristol Old Vic.

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