New adaptation of Jane Austen’s ‘Sense and Sensibility’ opens at The Watermill Theatre on 3 April, 2014

Photo: © Michael Wharley

The Watermill presents





The Watermill is delighted to announce its next production of Jane Austen’s much loved classic Sense and Sensibility, which will play from Thursday 3 April 2014 (press night Monday 7 April at 7.30pm) in a brand new adaptation by Jessica Swale.

Left penniless after their wealthy uncle cheats them of their fortune, sisters Elinor and Marianne Dashwood are forced to leave the comforts of Norland Park and relocate to a cold Devonshire cottage. But when a devilishly handsome stranger arrives at Barton Cottage with the rain-drenched Marianne in his arms, the Dashwood girls are convinced that their fortunes are about to change forever. Impulsive Marianne loses herself in the idea of her hero on horseback, and for a girl who feasts on poetry and music, what else is there to do in Devon but dream of rescue? In Austen’s dearly loved classic, we follow the fortunes of the two Dashwood sisters as they chase their dreams from Devonshire to London and back.

Jessica Swale is a theatre director, playwright and co-founder of Red Handed Theatre Company. Jessica made her directorial debut at Shakespeare’s Globe in 2010 with Bedlam, the first play by a female playwright ever to be staged at the venue. Other work as director includes The School for Scandal (Park Theatre), Sleuth (Watermill Theatre),The Busy BodyThe Belle’s Stratagem (Evening Standard Award nomination) and The Rivals (all at Southwark Playhouse), and as Associate Director Jessica has worked with companies including Shakespeare’s Globe, Hampstead Theatre and Out of Joint. Jessica’s first full length play Blue Stockings premiered at Shakespeare’s Globe in August 2013.

Jessica Swale said today: “I’ve loved Austen since picking up a copy of Pride and Prejudice as a teenager. The BBC was partly responsible; Colin Firth’s now infamous lake dip left us all drenched, hooked and wondering how a nineteenth century woman could be so honest and insightful about relationships when most women of her time were hidden away. The fact that Austen was such a success is testament to her ability to draw real life so convincingly in words, and the job of adapting it for stage has been both a thrilling and intimidating process.”

The cast features Paul Bigley as John Dashwood, Jane Brooker as Fanny Dashwood, Jenny Funnell as Mrs Dashwood, Alice Haig as Margaret Dashwood, Cassie Layton as Marianne Dashwood, Graham O’Mara as Edward Ferrars, Peter Ormond as Colonel Brandon, William Owen as Willoughby and Sally Scott as Elinor Dashwood. Sense and Sensibility is designed by Philip Engleheart.

The Watermill is a local theatre with a national reputation. From a converted watermill in rural West Berkshire seating just 220 people, The Watermill creates award-winning work that is recognised throughout the UK and abroad, with a bold artistic ambition to present a range of work from Shakespeare, classic plays and new writing to the reimagining of large-scale musicals. Alongside West End and Broadway transfers, and national and international tours, The Watermill also creates productions for small-scale touring, ensuring that those living in rural isolation are able to enjoy high quality theatre on their doorstep. Attracting the very best artists and creative teams, both established and at the early stages of their careers, The Watermill has earned itself a reputation as one of the very best producing theatres in the country.

Twitter: @WatermillTh#WMSenseandSensibility | Facebook: TheWatermillTheatre

For more information and to book tickets, please Click Here.

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