Folk Tales in the Town Centre

On Saturday 19 August at 11.30am and 3pm at the Clock Tower, Newbury The Watermill Theatre will bring drama, music and storytelling to the town centre with Newbury Yarns, a free promenade theatre event suitable for families.

Photo credit (c) Janossy Gergely

Beginning at the Clock Tower and moving through the town to finish at the Marketplace, the performance will blend drama, comedy, storytelling, traditional folk music and brand-new songs, to bring local history vividly to life.

From Jack of Newbury’s daring exploits to the Combe Gibbet Executions and the Civil War witch, Newbury Yarns reimagines local legends and historical events, often in the very spot where they happened. Told from the perspective of two ghostly actors from the now-demolished Pelican Lane Theatre, each tale stands alone, and audience members can join at any point. For those who follow the complete journey however, a tale emerges in which the mystery behind Newbury’s lost theatre is revealed.

Actress Scarlet Wilderink
Actress Scarlet Wilderink

Newbury Yarns is written by The Watermill’s Playwright in Residence Danielle Pearson. Danielle is a local writer, whose recent credits include Ann Veronica (Watermill Senior Youth Theatre), New Europe (Camden People’s Theatre), Tabitha’s Ballad (South Street Arts Centre, Reading) and The Shipping Forecast (Pleasance Theatre Scratch). She is the winner of the 2017 EU Collective Plays Competition, and a member of the Royal Court Writer’s Group.

Directing the piece is Chloe France. Chloe has recently completed a placement at The Watermill as Resident Assistant Director. Her credits while there included House and Garden, Faust x2, Murder for Two and Sleeping Beauty. She is currently the Associate Director on The Wipers Times (UK tour) having worked on the production at The Watermill and the Arts Theatre, West End. Other credits include Red Cross (Albany Theatre), Collective Energy (Hackney Empire) and Bazaar and Rummage (Edinburgh Fringe Festival). She is a graduate of the MFA Theatre Directing course at Birkbeck College.

Actor Oliver Izod
Actor Oliver Izod

Newbury Yarns will be performed by a cast of two with Oliver Izod playing James Joseph Burton and Scarlet Wilderink as Annie Rivers. Oliver has previously performed at The Watermill in hit Christmas shows Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan. He is also a musician, comedian and improviser, has worked on record breaking satirical show NewsRevue (London and Edinburgh), written for Jenny Bede’s AAA (BBC3), performed with Arthur Smith (BBC Radio 4) and recently joined Bowjangles – the all singing, all dancing comedy string quartet (touring the UK 2018). Scarlet made her debut at The Watermill last year in Watership Down, Rona Munro’s adaptation of Richard Adams epic adventure story. Other recent credits include the West End production of War Horse and the UK tour of Running Wild by Michael Mopurgo.

Newbury Yarns is a free event and no pre-booking is required.

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