Antic Productions, Bristol Old Vic, Longshot Films and Playtone announce that new musical Starter for Ten will receive its world premiere at Bristol Old Vic from 29 February – 30 March 2024 as part of Nancy Medina’s inaugural season as Artistic Director.
Based on the hilarious coming-of-age novel by David Nicholls (One Day, Us, Sweet Sorrow) and the popular 2006 film adaptation starring James McAvoy, Benedict Cumberbatch, James Corden and Rebecca Hall, this tale of love, class and growing up in the 1980s is set in Bristol against the backdrop of legendary British quiz show University Challenge. Casting for the new musical is to be announced.
Starter for Ten will have a book and lyrics co-written by Emma Hall and Charlie Parham, Artistic Directors of Antic Productions. The 80s-inspired original score and lyrics will be composed by queer, pop-punk composers Tom Rasmussen (who recently supported Self Esteem on UK tour with their debut album, Body Building) and Hatty Carman. The production will be directed by Charlie Parham, with set and costume design by Olivier award nominee Frankie Bradshaw, lighting design by Jai Morjaria and casting by Will Burton for GBC.
David Nicholls, author of the bestselling novel Starter for Ten, said “Nearly 20 years after publication, it’s such a thrill that Brian’s misadventures are being brought to the stage, and by such a brilliant, dynamic team.”
Emma Hall and Charlie Parham, Artistic Directors of Antic Productions, said: “Ever since we first read David Nicholls’ brilliant novel, which brims with music on every page, we just knew it had to be a stage musical. To be presenting the world premiere of a Bristol-based story at the Bristol Old Vic is sincerely a dream come true. We cannot wait to bring this electrifying mix of general knowledge and anthemic, 80s-inspired music to audiences.”
Hatty Carman and Tom Rasmussen, composers of the new musical, said “We have absolutely adored bringing David Nicholls’ totally flawed, completely loveable characters to the stage. As musicians, it’s exhilarating to bring our love of the DIY music scene that raised us to a theatre like Bristol Old Vic.”
Fingers on buzzers! Here’s your Starter for Ten…
What is eighteen-year-old Brian Jackson’s proudest achievement to date? His A-level results. His idol? Kate Bush. His lifelong dream? To compete on legendary TV quiz show University Challenge. It’s 1985 and, leaving Southend to start his first year at Bristol University, Brian soon discovers that falling in love and growing up take a lot more than general knowledge…
Featuring an irresistible original soundtrack inspired by the riotous student scene of the 80s, Starter for Ten is a bright, big-hearted coming-of-age comedy about love, belonging and the all-important difference between knowledge and wisdom.