Wilton's

News

Stories and announcements

25May. 2016.

Shakespeare Untold: An Introduction from James Seabright

We're gearing up for a fun half term treat: a joint production from Shakespeare's Globe and Seabright Productions, Shakespeare Untold. We caught up with producer James Seabright and asked him to tell us a little about the show for a feature in our latest Friends' Newsletter. Here's an excerpt...


"The two Shakespeare Untold stories existed in a smaller form before I was involved and I was invited to see them in the education studios at the Globe. I could see straight away the potential and need for them to be scaled up to something rather bigger, so we put a design and production team behind them and launched them in Edinburgh last year. They were very well received and now they’re touring, culminating with a run at Wilton’s during half term week.

The two stories, of Romeo and Juliet and Titus Andronicus, are told by solo performers but seen through the fresh eyes of characters who don’t exist in the originals. We witness, second hand, the plot through the character on stage – a party planner and a pie-maker. Some of Shakespeare’s original text is in there but it’s far more accessible with a modern feel to it and, of course, lots of messy cooking in Titus Andronicus. It may sound strange for a play as bloody as that to be staged in a way that is accessible and not too scary for the kids but they love a bit of gore and it really does work. In fact, I think they enjoy that aspect of the story the most. Shakespeare’s Globe has been working on quite a few untolds for a while so there may be others in future. And, of course, it’s particularly wonderful to be doing these in the year of the 
400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death."

James Seabright is an independent theatre producer and general manager who has worked on more than 200 shows since 2001, under the auspices of Seabright Productions Ltd since 2009. He has toured shows around the UK and internationally, staged productions both on and off the West End and, for 11 years, his Festival Highlights shows at Edinburgh bagged awards galore including five Scotsman Fringe Firsts for productions directed by Hannah Eidinow. The Seabright productions catalogue is impressive: Potted Sherlock, Showstopper!, Eric and Little Ern, Potted Potter, Julie Madly Deeply, The Only Way is Downton and An Instinct For Kindness to name but a few. As well as Shakespeare Untold with Shakespeare’s Globe, James is also bringing Dinosaur Parkwith Superbolt Theatre, to Wilton's in July. We hope to see a great deal more of him in future.

Shakespeare Untold runs 31st May to 4th June with matinee and evening performances each day; Dinosaur Park runs 21st June to 2nd July with matinee performances on 25th June and 2nd July.

Wilton's Friends and Patrons are an essential lifeline, supporting the work we do through a yearly membership fee. To find out more about the membership levels and the newsletters, visit 
wiltons.org.uk/support.

Read more
16May. 2016.

Falstaff: A Note from the Director

Back in November 2014, conductor Ben Woodward rang me up and said, ‘Daisy, would you like to direct Falstaff?’ Gleefully I replied, ‘yes Ben I’d love to! When are the rehearsals? When does it start?’ Then followed a exasperated exhale, ‘Well… the thing is, it opens in 10 days’, ‘ah…’

Thus began my joyful, hair-raising, hilarious and perfectly charming journey with this production of Falstaff. I can honestly say it’s one of the best shows I’ve directed, and I owe that to the fantastic ensemble and the huge amount of energy they generate from beginning to end. Keel Watson was born to play John Falstaff, and surrounded by a perfect combination of comedians; this show clicks together in the most satisfying and joyful way imaginable.

My production of Falstaff brings us to Windsor’s local ‘Spoons, The Garter Inn. I wanted the piece to be completely modern so the comedy could be fresh and accessible. Verdi’s characters are 100% recognisable to a modern audience; Falstaff a sleazy glutton with no other aim in life but to be satisfied, Ford is an over-confident sideline-coach-dad, and the merry wives are tracksuit clad ladies-wot-lunch. Hilarity ensues when all these characters collide in a confused, multi-layered plot to teach the lecherous Falstaff a lesson.


A great friend and mentor once told me that in tragedy, the dramatic events take over and engulf the characters, and in comedy, the characters only just keep abreast of the situation. I immediately imagined a group of stick figures precariously balancing on a fast turning ball, feet slipping, hands waving, clutching each other in a wild attempt to stay on top. So my interpretation of Falstaff followed that - each individual scrabbles with the threads of a complicated love triangle, or rather three triangles all layered on top of each other, then confused… What’s joyful about this show is watching them work their way through the jumble of confusion. Like ants in a maze!

It’s a thrilling show to watch, the characters are spot on and their interactions are laced with innuendo, sarcasm and mischief. Every one of them puts on a persona to deal with another, and what ensues is a collage of extreme behaviours and comedic indulgence. It’s almost cartoon like when Falstaff meets Alice for a proposed seduction, but the comedy bites us twice when we see them drop the façade and gasp for air.

But in the end – ‘tutti gabbati’, it’s all a joke. We’re here to be entertained, so let us do just that. From our first 10 days at St. John’s Fulham, to a week at Grimeborn and now a week at Wilton’s, I’m hugely proud of the cast and the show. It’s a perfect piece to get the giggles gurgling and the smile will stay on your face from beginning to end. The energy radiating from this ensemble is sublime, and it’s a wonderful experience that will appeal to everyone from novice opera-goers to season ticket holders, young and old. I urge everyone to HAVE MORE FUN!


Fulham Opera present Verdi’s Falstaff
23rd May to 28th May, 7:30pm - 10pm, £12 - £23
Sung in Italian with English surtitles
Click here to find out more and to book.
Read more
11May. 2016.

A chat with Hackney Colliery Band's Steve Pretty

Hackney colliery Band are making their Wilton’s debut, although they have been known to take up their instruments here more than once already, as frontman, trumpet and melodica player, Steve Pretty, explained. “We have played here privately at three weddings so we know what a special venue this is and the acoustic is perfect for our sound. We’ll also be filming and recording the shows for a live album so this feels like the high spot of our tour”. 


The band was formed in 2008, born of ‘a desire to play music that appealed to the feet as much as to the ears’. Inspired by contemporary US brass bands, their line-up is similar but they have evolved into something quite different with their own distinctive sound and identity. “We use a lot of electronics live as well as acoustics and take our influences from jazz, Björk and rock as much as from brass traditions. It’s the meeting of traditional and modern that interests us”.

Steve is keen to steer clear of over-used words such as eclectic and unique when describing HCB’s style and material, as well avoiding being labelled a ‘novelty’ cover band. “Although we started out doing a lot of covers and still do, we always limited it to less obvious numbers, apart from the Closing Ceremony for the 2012 Olympics, where we were commissioned to play more commercial covers”. Ah, yes, THAT gig. The one where HCB played a blistering set to countless millions worldwide, conveying the raw spirit of 21st century East London with an unmistakably British sense of humour.” I’m so glad we did it, it was a privilege - unforgettable and amazing, but there was none of the immediacy and adrenalin rush of playing somewhere like Wilton’s where you can interact with your audience and literally feel the music”.

For Hackney Colliery Band, audience interaction can be anything from a 90-something man taking his shirt off and dancing topless until his wife told him enough was quite enough, to unexpectedly being joined on stage by Amy Winehouse at the Jazz Café. “Unfortunately, it was towards the end of her life so she was not in the best of shape but it was a very special moment”.

If you didn’t manage to get tickets to this week's two sell-out shows, Steve Pretty will be playing a stripped down set in the Mahogany Bar, accompanied by a couple of musical friends, on 25th July. Also, keep an eye on our website in coming weeks for a podcast in which Steve relates his own very personal and unusual story.

Photography: Steve Pretty-Aidan Harris-Rachel Morris  -  Steve 3rd from left
Read more
11May. 2016.

Ida Barr's Drop the Mic Poetry Night

Calling all budding poets for a special event here at Wilton's on 13th June!



On Monday 13th June, we are presenting a historically inaccurate poetry night compered by none other than faded Music Hall Star, Ida Barr. Poetry and rhyme was an integral part of Victorian Music Hall entertainment. Often performers would use poetry to inform their audiences of current events and political issues of the day.

We are looking for four emerging poets to perform a short ten-minute set including at least one poem about current events.

If you would like to apply, please complete the application form and send to: info@wiltons.org.uk . You can download the application form here.    
Deadline Monday 23rd May at midday.

Read more
5May. 2016.

Wilton's Strike! Dance Festival: Day 3

Wilton’s Strike! Dance Festival returns, premiering six new works by emerging artists. Whether you are a dance professional or an enthusiastic fan of the genre, this is a perfect opportunity to see tomorrow's star performers and choreographers at the outset of their artistic careers. 


Having trouble? Try watching on artstreamingtv.com

"It’s my great pleasure to welcome you to the second Wilton’s Strike! Dance Festival. Our six choreographers, selected from more than a hundred applicants, were commissioned to develop a new piece of work on the thought-provoking theme of memory.

We are very grateful to everyone who helped to make this project happen, especially our wonderful judges who selected these pieces for development and the mentors who have guided our choreographers along the way. 

This year we have extended the opportunity to a new generation of choreographers as part of Youth Strike! Jo Meredith, one of our 2014 festival choreographers, has been working with a group of pupils from George Green’s School to choreograph their own piece based on the theme. Their performance will be our curtain raiser on the first night of this year’s festival. 

We’re also excited to be working with Eastside Educational Trust for the first time, giving alumni from their BFI Film Academy the opportunity to create short films to introduce each piece. We hope you enjoy their films and the new work being presented this week." 

- Becky Ruffell, Producer

Panel Judges: 
Viviana Durante, Jonathan Goddard & Lee Smikle 

Mentors: 
Malgorzata Dzierzon, Jonathan Goddard 
& Joe Walkling 

George Green’s School Performers: 
Georgia Brooks, Michael Drew, Josie Hodges, Marjhan Akther Hossain, Melissa Hudson, Alayssa Khatun, Waseem Kibria, Wagd Mohamed, Fatima Omar, Emily Parrt, Georgina Pooley, Bradley Sands, Armel Seri & Kieran Rice 
With special thanks to: Cerian Whiting from George Green’s School, Wilton’s Learning & Participation Manager, David Graham & Choreographer Jo Meredith

Film By: Eastside Educational Trust

An open Q&A session will follow on each night

See the full programme here: 
Wilton's Strike! Dance Festival 
Read more
4May. 2016.

Wilton's Strike! Dance Festival: Day 2

Wilton’s Strike! Dance Festival returns, premiering six new works by emerging artists. Whether you are a dance professional or an enthusiastic fan of the genre, this is a perfect opportunity to see tomorrow's star performers and choreographers at the outset of their artistic careers. 


Having trouble? Try watching on artstreamingtv.com

"It’s my great pleasure to welcome you to the second Wilton’s Strike! Dance Festival. Our six choreographers, selected from more than a hundred applicants, were commissioned to develop a new piece of work on the thought-provoking theme of memory.

We are very grateful to everyone who helped to make this project happen, especially our wonderful judges who selected these pieces for development and the mentors who have guided our choreographers along the way. 

This year we have extended the opportunity to a new generation of choreographers as part of Youth Strike! Jo Meredith, one of our 2014 festival choreographers, has been working with a group of pupils from George Green’s School to choreograph their own piece based on the theme. Their performance will be our curtain raiser on the first night of this year’s festival. 

We’re also excited to be working with Eastside Educational Trust for the first time, giving alumni from their BFI Film Academy the opportunity to create short films to introduce each piece. We hope you enjoy their films and the new work being presented this week." 

- Becky Ruffell, Producer

Panel Judges: 
Viviana Durante, Jonathan Goddard & Lee Smikle 

Mentors: 
Malgorzata Dzierzon, Jonathan Goddard 
& Joe Walkling 

George Green’s School Performers: 
Georgia Brooks, Michael Drew, Josie Hodges, Marjhan Akther Hossain, Melissa Hudson, Alayssa Khatun, Waseem Kibria, Wagd Mohamed, Fatima Omar, Emily Parrt, Georgina Pooley, Bradley Sands, Armel Seri & Kieran Rice 
With special thanks to: Cerian Whiting from George Green’s School, Wilton’s Learning & Participation Manager, David Graham & Choreographer Jo Meredith

Film By: Eastside Educational Trust

An open Q&A session will follow on each night

See the full programme here: 
Wilton's Strike! Dance Festival 
Read more
4May. 2016.

Celebration Time!

We're cock-a-hoop today because, last night, our building conservation project won not one, not even two but (drum roll) THREE ROYAL INSTITUTE OF BRITISH ARCHITECTS AWARDS! Yes, we feel that deserves upper case all the way. Most important of all, we captured this initial reaction to the news from Site Mascot, Bailey.



The awards in question are: RIBA London Award 2016;  RIBA London Conservation Award 2016; RIBA London Building of the Year 2016. You can find out more and see lots of Hélène Binet’s beautiful photographs here

Please join us in offering a heartfelt congratulations to everyone who played a part in phase One to repair the auditorium and Phase Two to repair the front of house buildings:

Tim Ronalds Architects
Fullers Builders - Phase One
William Anelay Ltd - Phase Two
Cambridge Architectural Research - Structural Engineers
Max Fordham LLP - M&E Engineers
EC Harris - Quanitity Surveyor, Phase One
Bristow Johnson - Quanitity Surveyor, Phase Two
Carr & Angier - Theatre Consultant
Ramboll - Acoustic Engineers
All Clear Designs - Access Consultant
John Earl - Conservation Plan
The Wilton's team


Photography: Hélène Binet

Read more
3May. 2016.

Wilton's Strike! Dance Festival: Day 1


Wilton’s Strike! Dance Festival returns, premiering six new works by emerging artists. Whether you are a dance professional or an enthusiastic fan of the genre, this is a perfect opportunity to see tomorrow's star performers and choreographers at the outset of their artistic careers. 



Having trouble? Try watching on artstreamingtv.com


"It’s my great pleasure to welcome you to the second Wilton’s Strike! Dance Festival. Our six choreographers, selected from more than a hundred applicants, were commissioned to develop a new piece of work on the thought-provoking theme of memory.

We are very grateful to everyone who helped to make this project happen, especially our wonderful judges who selected these pieces for development and the mentors who have guided our choreographers along the way. 

This year we have extended the opportunity to a new generation of choreographers as part of Youth Strike! Jo Meredith, one of our 2014 festival choreographers, has been working with a group of pupils from George Green’s School to choreograph their own piece based on the theme. Their performance will be our curtain raiser on the first night of this year’s festival. 

We’re also excited to be working with Eastside Educational Trust for the first time, giving alumni from their BFI Film Academy the opportunity to create short films to introduce each piece. We hope you enjoy their films and the new work being presented this week." 

- Becky Ruffell, Producer

Panel Judges: 
Viviana Durante, Jonathan Goddard & Lee Smikle 

Mentors: 
Malgorzata Dzierzon, Jonathan Goddard 
& Joe Walkling 

George Green’s School Performers: 
Georgia Brooks, Michael Drew, Josie Hodges, Marjhan Akther Hossain, Melissa Hudson, Alayssa Khatun, Waseem Kibria, Wagd Mohamed, Fatima Omar, Emily Parrt, Georgina Pooley, Bradley Sands, Armel Seri & Kieran Rice 
With special thanks to: Cerian Whiting from George Green’s School, Wilton’s Learning & Participation Manager, David Graham & Choreographer Jo Meredith

Film By: Eastside Educational Trust

An open Q&A session will follow on each night

See the full programme here: 
Wilton's Strike! Dance Festival 
Read more
22Apr. 2016.

Filming, Dance & Memory: Eastside Educational Guest Post

Throughout the Easter break, Eastside Educational Trust worked with 9 talented emerging filmmakers to create short films as part of Wilton’s Strike! Dance Festival. Eastside was delighted to be asked to produce short films to introduce the six choreographers presenting work at the festival.

Each of the choreographers interprets the theme of memory differently and our 3 student crews were keen to visually represent the inspiration behind the choreographers’ work. The young people were struck by the location and how the venue resonates with the theme of memory. By exploring the themes with the choreographers and understanding more about their inspiration, the filmmakers have produced 6 very different films incorporating key elements identified by the choreographers whether it is the inner life of inanimate things, the personalities of the celebrities we get hooked on or even visually arresting scenes from films we know and love. 
Thick & Tight, Louis, Mark and Ellie

The choreographers vision wasn’t the only inspiration for the filmmakers, Mark commented: “Wilton’s is an amazing film location and brings otherwise ordinary shots to life.”  The project enabled the students not only to extend their filmmaking skills but also deepen their understanding of contemporary dance: “...contemporary dancers really thinks outside of the box when it comes to introducing narrative to the stage.” Another filmmaker commented: “I learnt more about the process choreographers go through to create their work and ... the hidden meaning and humour incorporated into dance”.

Louis, aged 18, who took on the role of Producer comments “I really enjoyed being able to meet new people where we were combining the best of our strengths to create our work. The experience has been really good, meeting professional choreographers and working within a new field; video production for contemporary dance.” Harry, aged 18, took on one of the directorial and cinematography roles adds: “what I really enjoyed was the freedom to make the films using our vision and trying something experimental”.  Sam, aged 17, who edited two of the short films added “this project was a great opportunity to work professionally and add to my showreel, I’ve really enjoyed designing something for a client!” 



The festival will showcase 6 pieces of work as well as the films produced by the young filmmakers, and well as this, the events are also being live-streamed worldwide through Art Stream TV which is very exciting as the students have been given the opportunity to shadow to learn more about TV broadcasting in addition to developing their professional portfolio in film making as part of the commission!



Rakhee Jasani, director of Eastside Educational Trust, explains “this has been a wonderful opportunity for us to work with Wilton’s Music Hall and to give our students the opportunity to work on their first commissioned project.”

The team at Eastside Educational Trust, and the filmmakers involved, are really looking forward to having their pieces screened at the festival on 2nd, 3rd and 4th May 2016. Those who can't make it in person will also be able to watch the films as part of the live stream.

Find out more, book your tickets and watch the live stream 
here.



About Eastside Educational Trust

Eastside Educational Trust exists to help young people develop their creative thinking, so they can be the problem solvers of tomorrow. Eastside is a professional organisation with creativity at its heart, inspiring young people from different backgrounds to discover their individual talents through creative workshops and sessions. We provide professional participatory workshops and guidance for all young people across the entire spectrum of the arts. We have recently worked with Gold Arts Award candidates supporting them in creating 4 short films for Step Into Dance to be used by the RAD to promote the programme. Eastside Educational Trust delivers all levels of the Arts Award and is an Arts Award Good Practice Centre Mentor. Eastside delivers the BFI Film Academy in London and Adobe Youth Voices.

eastside.org.uk



Read more
21Apr. 2016.

Farewell Victoria

This legend took to our stage only once, for the British Music Hall Society's 50th anniversary celebrations. Whilst she was here, she generously gave us a little of her time to record this on-camera chat with Dan Higley.  We're so very glad that she did.


Read more

Box Office 020 7702 2789

Copyright - Cookies Policy - Visit Us

Patron HRH The Prince of Wales · © Wilton’s Music Hall, Graces Alley, London E1 8JB · VAT No. 583681407
Wilton’s Music Hall Trust Registered Charity No. 1003041 · Company Limited by Guarantee No. 2553922

  • HLF 2
Your cart  
Check Out