Pitlochry Festival Theatre is to reopen this summer with a season of outdoor performances.
Performed from June till September in the theatre’s newly built 80-seater amphitheatre and riverside bandstand, the summer season will include the stage première of David Greig’s Adventures with the Painted People (10 June-4 July), which was originally commissioned by Pitlochry Festival Theatre as part of their 2020 Season, and subsequently became an acclaimed BBC Radio 3 play later in the year.
Adventures with the Painted People is a compelling new drama about love, culture, and identity, set on the River Tay, 2000 years ago, as a Roman poet and a Pictish witch escape together downriver.
Other highlights in the new season include Hannah Lavery’s new, one-person, adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic, gothic tale Jekyll and Hyde (18,26, 28 August and 1 & 8 September) and Jo Clifford and Lesley Orr’s new promenade production Requiem (15-18 September) which will see Clifford and Orr devise a ceremony that will mourn and celebrate the lives of those lost during the pandemic and support the process of our collective grief.
The new summer season will also see the premiere of A Night by the River Tay (various dates between 14 July – 3 September), a series of short plays from the theatre’s acclaimed digital collection, Shades of Tay, written by an incredible line up of great Scottish Talent; and Storytelling and Music as part of the Theatre’s exciting project, The Tay’s Gaelic Memoir with Comann nam Parant Obar Pheallaidh, Fèis Thatha and Perth and Kinross Council.
All these great new works celebrating Perthshire and beyond will be performed alongside new adaptations of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s White Nights: A Sentimental Diary of a Dreamer (7-10 July) and Anton Chekov’s Smoking is Bad for You (19, 22 August, and 9 and 10 September).
The season will also feature a line-up of entertainment for all the family. As well as an exciting new adaptation performed on the riverbanks of the River Tummel of Kenneth Grahame’s much-loved children’s tale, Wind in the Willows (2 July-12 September), from July, family audiences can explore the theatre’s beautiful garden in an exciting promenade experience of Alice in Wonderland. Inspired by Lewis Carroll’s fun and adventurous story, Alice in Wonderland World, promises to be an exciting new sound installation and visual extravaganza produced in both Gaelic and English for people of all ages to enjoy!
Throughout the new season, Pitlochry Festival Theatre will also celebrate live music by hosting a series of special evening events, which will feature music from the great operas and musicals, as well as an evening dedicated to the work of Mozart and the great Agatha Christie.
Elizabeth Newman, Pitlochry Festival Theatre’s artistic director said: ‘It has been a challenging year for everyone in Scotland. People have experienced awful loss and great hardship.
‘During this last year, we tried to stay in contact every day with audiences through LIGHTHOPEJOY. We have also done many, many online events, performances, creative partnerships and, of course, been keeping in touch with lots of people through our telephone club.
‘However, we know our amazing audiences have missed being in-person and experiencing live theatre “in-the-flesh”. We have said, as soon as possible, we would be back in person and, although we could not produce the Summer Season as previously planned, I feel extraordinarily excited to share this Outdoor Summer Season with audiences, especially for our Big Birthday. I hope it channels the same unstoppable spirit that first made Pitlochry Festival Theatre extraordinary 70 years ago when John Stewart first put up the Theatre-tent.
‘I am excited to share the programme as it is filled with lots of Scottish dramas, classics, joyful entertainment, music, and family fun. We cannot wait to bring people together to celebrate our beautiful Perthshire landscape, celebrate Scottish Talent, art, and theatre, and of course a sense of coming together after such a long period of being apart.
‘We pride ourselves on being a Scottish theatre in the heart of Scotland and we cannot wait to welcome people back. I believe everyone knows how passionate we are about being a Theatre for All and a Theatre for a Lifetime, so we really look forward to opening our 70th summer season to continue this important mission.’
Throughout the season Pitlochry Festival Theatre will implement numerous procedures to ensure the audience’s safety throughout their experience. The theatre’s priority is the safety and welfare of their visitors and colleagues and will be following all current government guidelines and regulations to keep everyone safe during their visit.
Pitlochry Festival Theatre’s artistic programme for the summer season and during the pandemic has generously been supported by various donors, trusts, and foundations including Creative Scotland, the Holy Trinity Scottish Episcopal Church (part of the Highland Linked Charge) and the Theatre Reopening Fund from the Theatres Trust. Tay’s Gaelic Memoir is grateful for funding from SSE and Bòrd na Gàidhlig.
Further information about the summer season will be announced in the coming weeks.
Tickets for the summer season are on general sale from Tuesday 27 April at www.pitlochryfestivaltheatre.com.