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Southwark Cathedral’s  Shakespeare Memorial window by Christopher Webb (1866–1966)

 

PERICLES 2020 is a dramatic new re-imagining of Shakespeare’s lyrical play drawing together music, drama, puppetry and choral singing in a celebration of history, contemporary culture and community. A cast of 22 with an ensemble of baroque instruments and a community choir, embark on a journey of shipwrecks,  coincidences, riddles and miracles. And all is watched over by John Gower, the medieval poet who returns from the grave to tell the story,  played here by a giant puppet.

PERICLES 2020 will premiere at the Embassy Theatre (May 2020) before touring to three extraordinary UK cathedrals beginning at Southwark Cathedral on Saturday 6th June 2020. The spectacular cathedral settings, enriched by sculptural  lighting, staging and vibrant music make PERICLES 2020 an unforgettable and sumptuous  production.

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SuchStuff Productions is a not-for-profit organisation, set up to offer exceptional creative frameworks for young actors and musicians. Our new production, Pericles 2020, builds upon this model by extending the opportunities to composers and community choral groups and working collaboratively with new venues. Generous financial and in-kind support from Royal Central School of Speech and Drama fund the creation and development of PERICLES.

Shakespeare, Southwark, Pericles and John Gower 

John Gower (1330 – 1408) was one of England’s earliest poets – a contemporary of William Langland and  Geoffrey Chaucer. He was highly thought of during his life time and enjoyed the patronage of Richard II who he met whilst rowing on the River Thames.  The   meeting inspired him to write Confessio Amantis – a work consisting of 34,000 rhymed couplets and includes a tribute to Chaucer. And Shakespeare lifted the plot for his play Pericles, Prince of Tyre from Confessio Amantis.

Gower remarried at the age of 70 in 1398 and two years later he went blind. Most of his final years were spent in the priory of St Mary Overies in Southwark. (St. Mary Overy was the previous name for Southwark Cathedral.) His magnificent brightly coloured tomb is in the  north aisle of the nave of Southwark Cathedral. His head rests upon his three main works: the Confessio Amantis, Vox Clamantis and Speculum Meditantis.

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Giant Puppet Prototype for John Gower by Sebastian Mayers

Don Quixote (compressed)

Production Information

· For all ages
· 70 mins running time (no interval)
· 22 performers, choir, SM, DSM and 1 technician on the road
· 1 day get in (on the morning of the performance)
· 2 hour strike
Tech requirements

Playing space can be variable but PERICLES has been designed and scaled for over-sized spaces (300-800 seats)

No lighting rigs necessary but we will supply basic LX (eg doughty stands with fresnels, hand held lights)

 

Marketing Strategy

We have a comprehensive marketing strategy in place (running January – July 2020) which complements and enhances that of the brochure / online promotion provided by venues.

We will provide:
· Print: A5 flyers, A4 and A3 posters
· Rehearsal, production and puppet building photos
· Trailer
· Press release
· Box office briefing sheet
· Plus regular contact with your marketing department and liaising re social media in order to reach sales targets

Target audiences and outreach

PERICLES 2020 embraces both a sense of place and community and brings a local choir into each performing venue to become part of the performance.

Audiences are those already engaged in the arts and regular venue attendees,those who are not regular venue attendees but will are attracted to the mix of cross-arts, the familiar Shakespeare title and unusual use of puppetry.

Touring Dates: to follow shortly

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