One Man, Two Guvnors and a new musical give the New Wolsey’s autumn season plenty of punch

Exterior view of the New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich. Photo Carl Lamb

Exterior view of the New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich. Photo Carl Lamb - Credit: Archant

The New Wolsey has announced its autumn season. It contains a classic knock-about farce, a new musical, a mystery which features Agatha Christie, a gripping World War II drama and a new play about dangerous prejudice in a small community

Writer-director Pete Rowe in rehearsal at the New Wolsey Theatre. He will be directing One Man, Two

Writer-director Pete Rowe in rehearsal at the New Wolsey Theatre. He will be directing One Man, Two Guvnors which will open the autumn season - Credit: Archant

One Man, Two Guvnors, one of the great West End hits of the last decade, will get a regional make-over this autumn, 40 years after the show which inspired it, A Servant of Two Masters, opened the theatre in 1979.

Set in the colourful underworld of Brighton in the swinging sixties, Richard Bean’s riotous farce mixes all the elements of classic comedy into a fizzing cocktail of fun. Mistaken identity, cross-dressing, slapstick, mad gags and outrageous puns are shaken and stirred as Francis Henshall, cast out of his skiffle band, finds the best route to satisfy his considerable appetites for food, sex and money is to become One Man serving Two Guvnors.

The fast-paced comedy will be directed by the New Wolsey’s artistic director Peter Rowe. This joyous updating of Goldoni’s classic Italian comedy from the 18th century, The Servant of Two Masters, has quickly established itself as one of the great British comedies of the 21st Century and will launch the autumn season running from September 5-28.

The New Wolsey also has a well deserved reputation for staging new musicals and this autumn, the New Wolsey Theatre will co-produce with Royal & Derngate, Northampton a brand new romantic comedy, The Season. Filled with heart-warming and hilarious songs, from award-winning writers Jim Barne and Kit Buchan, winners of the 2018 MTI Stiles and Drewe Mentorship Award, this musical debut celebrates the very best of emerging British song-writing talent.

Exterior view of the New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich. Photo Mike Kwasniak

Exterior view of the New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich. Photo Mike Kwasniak - Credit: Archant

It’s Christmas Eve and Dougal has travelled from Ipswich to New York for his father’s wedding. At JFK Airport he’s greeted by Robyn. Tomorrow her sister becomes his stepmother and Robyn’s dreading it.

Dougal can’t wait. But then Dougal loves Christmas and Robyn is the original Grinch. Thrown together for a wild weekend in the city that never sleeps, their adventure becomes a musical whirlwind of confession, frustration and maxing-out credit cards in Macy’s. Will these two endearing misfits provide the ultimate test for the theory that opposites always attract? The Season showing from November 5-16.

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Original Theatre return to the New Wolsey stage this October with The Night Watch adapted by Hattie Naylor from the Sarah Waters novel. This latest visit follows the success of their production of The Habit of Art last spring.

A story of illicit love and everyday heroism, which takes us from a dazed and shattered post-war Britain back into the heart of the Blitz, towards the secrets that are hidden there. This atmospheric drama will be playing from September 30 to October 5.

One Man, Two Guvnors, the classic West End farce, will be the opening show for the New Wolsey's autu

One Man, Two Guvnors, the classic West End farce, will be the opening show for the New Wolsey's autumn season. Photo: New Wolsey - Credit: Archant

English Touring Theatre will be bringing Two Trains Running to Ipswich. The iconic American playwright August Wilson paints a vivid portrait of everyday lives in this defining moment of American history.

When Two Trains Running opened on Broadway in 1992, its legendary premiere won Tony and Drama Desk Awards. Directed by Nancy Medina, this major revival will take to the New Wolsey Theatre stage from October 8-12.

New Wolsey Young Company will be tackling a drama which shines a spotlight on real-life tragedy when they present The Laramie Project this October.

In October 1998 in the middle of the prairie outside Laramie, Wyoming, 21-year-old student Matthew Shepard, was tied to a fence post, severely beaten, robbed, tortured and left, alone, to die. His body was discovered 18 hours later, when he was rushed to the hospital and put on life support. Five days later, Matthew died. The reason for this brutal crime? Matthew Shepard was gay.

The hate crime attracted vast attention worldwide, bringing sexual discrimination and violence to the forefront of public discourse. The Tectonic Theatre Project travelled to Laramie in the aftermath of the murder with the intent of creating a theatrical portrait of a town coming to grips with horrible, hate-fuelled violence. This astonishing drama has been hailed as one of the most captivating and encompassing pieces of contemporary theatre, and will be showing at the New Wolsey Studio from Tue 8 to Sat 12 Oct.

Also coming up this autumn will be the return of Graeae to the New Wolsey stage bringing a reimagined version of One Under from playwright Winsome Pinnock and Graeae’s associate director Amit Sharma.

One Under has been commissioned by Ramps on the Moon, a collaborative network aiming to achieve a step change in the employment and artistic opportunities for disabled performers and creative teams, and a cultural change in the participating organisations to enable accessibility to become a central part of their thinking. This will be playing in Ipswich on October 31 and November 1.

Also this Autumn, do not miss the Gothic retelling of Bleak House, adapted by David Glass from the Dicken’s novel. This physical drama follows Esther Summerson’s search for family and identity set against a brutal legal system hell bent of destroying those beneath it. This performance runs from October 18-19.

From October 28-30, Agatha Christie turns sleuth in a play by Philip Meeks. Murder Margaret And Me is a story of friendship identity and the achievement of women in the longlost world of the silver screen. As Agatha and Margaret play tug of war with Miss Marple, the Queen of Crime finally unearths the shocking truth buried in Margaret’s past.

The new season will also see plenty of family friendly performances with the New Wolsey Youth Theatre presenting an adaptation of Roald Dahl’s much-loved story Fantastic Mr Fox between October 29 and November 2.

This Christmas also will see the return of a festive family friendly show over at the New Wolsey Studio this December as little ones will be delighted by Long Nose Puppet’s Arthur’s Dreamboat, based on the book by Polly Dunbar. There’s plenty more entertainment for younger audiences including: Jay Foreman’s Disgusting Songs For Revolting Children, Moomin Valley, Jack And The Beanstalk, Oi Frog plus many more.

Tickets at the New Wolsey Theatre are now on sale. Visit the website at or alternatively you can get in touch with the Tickets Sales Team by calling 01473 295900.