Theatre in the Forest outdoor venue to open at Sutton Hoo

A new outdoor theatre is to open next summer at Sutton Hoo, the site of the greatest British archaeological discovery of the 20th century. The pop-up playhouse, situated near Woodbridge in Suffolk, where a treasure-filled Anglo-Saxon ship burial was discovered in 1939, will be designed by 59 Productions. The company’s past creations have included digital light shows at the Edinburgh international festival, the Tony award-winning scenic design for the musical An American in Paris, the innovative touring exhibition David Bowie Is and the video design at the London 2012 Olympics opening ceremony.

The theatre company Red Rose Chain will present Macbeth at its new Theatre in the Forest venue in a partnership with the National Trust, which reopened the Sutton Hoo site in 2019 after a £4m revamp. Red Rose Chain has run its popular open-air Shakespeare productions for more than 20 年, with many of them staged at Jimmy’s Farm.

59 Productions said it had embarked on a period of research and development in response to the pandemic and is “passionate about creating spaces that are safe, secure and accessible for all”. Joanna Carrick, artistic director of Red Rose Chain, 前記: “It is so exciting to be working with 59 Productions and for them to bring their immense international experience to the project. The creative team from both organisations has been working hard together throughout lockdown to design exciting new infrastructure, focusing on our unique audience experience and strong community roots to secure the future for this very popular event.”

Mark Grimmer, co-founder of 59 Productions, grew up in Suffolk and was a member of Red Rose Chain’s youth theatre. The project team at 59 Productions is headed by Leo Warner and architect Jenny Melville. Footprint Scenery will build the new pop-up venue.

Red Rose Chain, founded in 1990, is based at the Avenue theatre in Ipswich and is known for its inclusive community projects. Its past productions include Carrick’s Tudor play Fallen in Love, which was staged at the Tower of London.

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