Ginger Hibiscus | Ginger Hibiscus | LOOK AHEAD: And Then Come the Nightjars at Theatre 503
Ginger Hibiscus | LOOK AHEAD: And Then Come the Nightjars at Theatre 503
Ginger Hibiscus | LOOK AHEAD: And Then Come the Nightjars at Theatre 503
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23 Aug LOOK AHEAD: And Then Come the Nightjars at Theatre503

Theatre 503 have announced that they are to open their autumn season with Bea Roberts’ And Then Come the Nightjars, the theatre’s first co-production with Bristol Old Vic, and the first of two productions from the winners of Theatre503’s inaugural Playwriting Award.

From west country writer Bea Roberts, And Then Come The Nightjars charts a farm’s struggle to survive the march of history, reflecting on the foot and mouth epidemic of 2001.

The pyres of cattle burning across the countryside are a sight most will never forget – even if only witnessed on TV – livestock and livelihoods literally going up in billowing plumes of smoke, a heartbreaking marker of the slaughter of four million animals, and the virtual closure of the countryside. An epidemic so significant it caused the postponement of a general election, the play explores how, ten years on, its scars are still evident on both the landscape and the relationships of those the disease affected, through the intimate friendship between two world-weary men.

Described as “fierce with rage yet achingly tender,” And Then Come The Nightjars will be Bea Roberts’ first full length production, and is directed by Theatre503’s Artistic Director Paul Robinson. He comments:

“I’m so excited to be directing Nightjars. The first time I read it, it made me a) cry in public and b) miss my bus stop by about a mile and a half. It is both hugely personal and nationally significant at the same time. Bea is a hugely talented writer who has already made quite an impression in Bristol. I am lucky to have assembled an incredible cast including RSC veteran David Fielder and a creative team including Olly Fox (National Theatre, Young Vic, Royal Court) who I’m confident will do justice to this fantastic piece.”

And Then Come the Nightjars was selected as one of two winners from over 1600 submissions to Theatre503’s Playwriting Award; the other winner, Valhalla, will play later in the season.

For tickets and information:
Venue: Theatre 503
Dates: Previews from 2nd September; shows 7th – 26th September 2015