Announced today, the culmination of New Diorama Theatre’s 10th birthday year centres on three major new artistic commissions from some of the country’s most celebrated theatre companies: Kandinksy, Rhum + Clay and Deafinitely Theatre. All of whom have been an essential part of the venue’s first decade, trailblazing to international recognition and critical acclaim for works commissioned by NDT.
NDT Artistic Director David Byrne said: ‘Ten years ago we founded NDT on the vision of being the first “companies theatre”. A decade on, the groups supported by NDT blaze a trail of international acclaim and growing artistic vision, at the heart of a new movement in British theatre. We’re glad to have three of the very best – Kandinsky, Rhum + Clay and Deafinitely Theatre – back home to celebrate this moment with us, each with their best work yet.’
More than anything, this season is about bringing people together for a feast of bold live experiences and vital conversations. After every performance, NDT are extending their famous hospitality to partner with Domino’s Camden in a UK Theatre first, offering every audience member across the season free slices of pizza to fuel post-show discussion and shared time with friends.
The season opens with the world premiere of The Winston Machine by NDT Associates Kandinsky (18 January – 19 February), fresh from standing ovations at Berlin’s renowned Schaubühne for previous NDT commission Trap Street (‘One of the most ingenious pieces of new theatre I have ever seen’ New York Times). An epic, intimate family saga, this is an unmissable new state-of-the-nation show about our contested heritage and the shadow of Winston Churchill, from one of the UK’s best theatre companies.
The second commission is Project Dictator, Or: Why Democracy Is Overrated And I Don’t Miss It At All (29 Mar – 30 Apr). NDT Associate Company Rhum + Clay return after a global tour with previous commission The War of the Worlds. A riotous double-act are reunited by the State for one final show – on pain of death. This is a darkly comic world premiere about artistic expression, complicity, and the power of a damn good state-censored variety performance, created in anonymous collaboration with artists living under authoritarian regimes.
Completing the trio of commissions is Everyday by Deafinitely Theatre (17 May – 11 June), following the company’s run of nationally-acclaimed work at NDT including 4.48 Psychosis. Four women come together to perform a ritual of community and catharsis, gathering up true stories of deaf women’s experiences of surviving abuse – in a cauldron of newt’s eyes and butterflies, deep scars, and blazing signs. A visually rich, playful and pulsatingly urgent world premiere directed by Paula Garfield, drawing on real-life interviews and combining BSL and English in the company’s unique bilingual style.
Elsewhere in the season, NDT and The PappyShow are supporting Passion Fruit (8-19 March), a shimmering new coming-of-age comedy-drama from NDT newcomer Dior Clarke and co-writer Stephanie Martin. The story of Romeo – a Black, Gay, British-Jamaican boy growing up on a North London housing estate – this world premiere follows sold-out previews at The Glory. Later, there is the London premiere of It Don’t Worry Me (3-7 May), a furiously original and confoundingly funny international collaboration from leading UK-based performance duo Bert & Nasi and Catalan company ATRESBANDES.
Completing the programme is When This Is Over (25 & 26 February) performed by Camden Youth Theatre from a blueprint by Company Three; and the premiere of NDT Associates The PappyShow’s first film Boys (dates TBC), commissioned by NDT based on their acclaimed stage show of the same name.
The season also sees NDT introducing Babes-In-Arms matinees for all three full commissions, alongside the venue’s regular Captioned & Relaxed Performances and £3 Jobseekers Allowance preview tickets across the programme.