Plano — The 2016 season for Theatre Britain has been announced. It will officially mark the group's 20th year and 16th season (the group was on hiatus from 1998 to 2001). Founder Sue Birch found a new space in the Cox Building Playhouse in Plano, and after years of mostly just doing the holiday panto, managed three shows in 2014 and four in 2015. In 2016 there will be five.
Those shows include the panto (The Sleeping Beauty) and the return of Old Time Music Hall. The other three plays come from N.J. Crisp (Dangerous Obsession), Robin Hawdon (Perfect Wedding) and Agatha Christie (The Hollow).
Below is the news release about the season, with descriptions, dates and info on subscriptions:
Plano, TX: Theatre Britain today announced the line-up of shows for 2016. The season will comprise five shows in this their 20th anniversary year and sixteenth season.
Artistic Director Sue Birch says: "Theatre Britain was founded in 1996, with the aim of introducing panto to North Texas. The company was dark between 1998 and 2001, hence the discrepancy in age and number of seasons. Since our return to producing in 2002, the number of shows in our seasons has varied, but, staying true to our roots, we have always had a panto written by Jackie Mellor-Guin, founder of Theatre Britain. To mark our 20th anniversary, we are reviving our very first panto, The Sleeping Beauty."
In addition to the panto, the 2016 season will feature a thriller, a farce, an Old Time Music Hall and a murder mystery.
In February, Theatre Britain will present the psychological thriller Dangerous Obsession by N J Crisp. One afternoon, a mild-mannered stranger turns up at the Driscoll house. Gradually, Sally and Mark Driscoll realize that John Barrett is more dangerous than he looks!
“ ... the audience dared not cough for fear of missing the next turn of the screw.” The Times, UK
N J Crisp (1923-2005) was a prolific writer for television as well a novelist and dramatist. He is best known in Britain as the author of scripts for the classic BBC television series Dixon of Dock Green, Colditz and Secret Army.
Perfect Wedding by Robin Hawdon will run April 8 to May 1. A wedding day goes hilariously wrong with misunderstandings, mistaken identities and the usual farcical shenanigans. An uproarious comedy and a touching love story, all in one.
Robin Hawdon is an actor, novelist and playwright. His first major commercial success, The Mating Game, had a long run at London’s Apollo Theatre. This was followed by Birthday Suite, Revenge, Don't Rock The Boat and Don't Dress For Dinner, based on an early French play by Marc Camoletti, which ran in the West End for six years. In the 1980s, he founded the Bath Fringe Festival, and became Director of the Theatre Royal Bath, England’s premier touring theatre. His novels include A Rustle In The Grass, The Journey and Survival Of The Fittest.
Old Time Music Hall returns in June and July. Devised by Sue Birch, Old Time Music Hall features songs, sketches, skits and novelties with an emcee who introduces each act and guides the audience through the evening. It's good, old-fashioned entertainment with something for everyone.
In September, Theatre Britain will present The Hollow, a murder mystery by Agatha Christie. A murder is committed when friends and family gather at a country house. Whodunit? First produced in Cambridge in February 1951, it transferred to the Fortune Theatre in London and subsequently to the Ambassadors Theatre, where it ran for eleven months.
The 2015 panto will be Jackie Mellor-Guin’s version of The Sleeping Beauty, opening Thanksgiving weekend and running through December 30. The Sleeping Beauty was the first panto produced by Theatre Britain back in 1996. This version has been updated for our 20th anniversary.
A traditional British panto is a fairy tale told in the style of melodrama. The audience is encouraged to cheer for the good guys, boo and hiss the bad guys and join in with the characters on stage. The show works on two levels, with a story children can follow and jokes adults can appreciate.
Theatre Britain’s 2016 Season
by N J Crisp
February 12 - February 28, 2016
An intriguing psychological thriller. One afternoon, a mild-mannered stranger appears at the Driscoll house. Gradually, Sally and Mark Driscoll realize that John Barrett is more dangerous than he looks! Rated: PG13
by Robin Hawdon
April 8 - May 1, 2016
A wedding day goes hilariously wrong. Expect misunderstandings, mistaken identities and the usual farcical shenanigans! Rated PG13
OLD TIME MUSIC HALL
Devised by Sue Birch
June 24 - July 17, 2016
Old Time Music Hall returns! Songs interspersed with sketches and skits and all manner of things. There’s something for everyone! Rated: PG
by Agatha Christie
September 2 - September 25, 2016
A murder is committed when friends and family gather at a country house for the weekend. Another glorious whodunit from the Queen of Crime. Rated PG13
THE SLEEPING BEAUTY
by Jackie Mellor-Guin
November 26 - December 30, 2016
A traditional British panto!
Wacky characters, songs, corny jokes and oodles of audience participation. The Sleeping Beauty was our first panto way back in 1996. We’ve hacked away the weeds, updated the show and we invite you to come and help us celebrate our 20th birthday! Rated: G
All performances are at the Cox Building Playhouse, 1517 H Avenue, Plano, TX 75074.
Adults $21, Seniors & Students $16, Children (14 and under) $11 (panto only)
10 percent discount for parties of 10 or more
Package deal available for Dangerous Obsession, Perfect Wedding, Old Time Music Hall and The Hollow.
$76 for adults, $60 for students and seniors