The Dukes Theatre Lancaster 40th Season
21st July 2011
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Cheers! It’s The Dukes 40th season


The Dukes will invite audiences to raise a glass in celebration of its 40th anniversary this autumn.

The Lancaster theatre is transforming one of its spaces – The Round – into a pub to celebrate four decades of hosting the best drama, film, music, comedy and art the city can offer.

And autumn 2011 sees that proud tradition continue with homegrown plays and top class touring shows.

The 40th homegrown season begins on October 6-29 with the Northern pub drama – Two.

Written by Jim Cartwright, whose Rise and Fall of Little Voice was recently revived at The Dukes, Two presents a snapshot of working class life set in a busy bar in 1989.

Audiences coming to see Two can enjoy  interval and post show drinks on the stage set itself as The Round becomes Lancaster’s newest pub for a month.

The pub season continues throughout October with another homegrown play Hi Vis starring Lancaster actress Christine Mackie, soon to be seen in TV’s Downton Abbey.

Hi Vis(October 13-15) is an extraordinary story told by an ordinary woman, raising issues often discussed ‘down the pub.’ It’s part of a thought provoking double-bill inviting the audience to put the world to rights over a pint.

Book for October 13’s performance and you’ll also catch Daniel Bye’s whistlestop tour of bizarre facts and impassioned arguments in The Price of Everything; book for October 14 and join in Deafjam, a fabulous evening of signed karaoke for deaf and hearing people; or come along on October 15 and see punk pioneer, Jah Wobble, present his Memoirs of a Geezer.

Fancy a Late Night Lock In? There’s two at The Dukes pub on October 27 and 28 showcasing new short plays.

Once last orders are called on the pub season, The Dukes turns its attention to family entertainment and its 40th Christmas show.

From November 25-January 7, The BFG will be in town. In a faithful adaptation of one of Roald Dahl’s most scrumdiddlyumptious stories, The Dukes Christmas gift comes complete with amazing puppetry, loads of fun and plenty of surprises.

There’s plenty more dramatic treats lined up for the anniversary season and among the touring highlights are: We Are Three Sisters, Northern Broadsides new play about The Brontes(September 27-October 1); the premiere of pitch black musical comedy Captain Murderer and the Morecambe Mermaid(September 1-5); and new takes on classics by Shakespeare and Marlowe – Much Ado About Nothing(November 10-12) and The Tragical History of Dr Faustus(October 29).

Famous names bringing a smile to the face of the 40-year-old Dukes this autumn will be Robin Ince(October 21);  Mark Steel(December 5) and Arthur Smith(December 9).

And helping The Dukes to hit the high notes as it approaches middle-age are a string of top class musicians from flamenco guitarist Juan Martin(September 9) to contemporary folk star James Yorkston(December 19). The Dukes also hosts Lancaster Jazz Festival’s main stage headliners, the Maoz-Sirkis duet on September 24.


Always keen to introduce Lancaster audiences to talent which has wowed crowds elsewhere, The Dukes welcomes The Fitzrovia Radio Hour on October 13 in a recreation of the spirit of 1940s radio; and Ballet Black perform on November 4.

And continuing its reputation for encouraging young theatre audiences, The Dukes welcomes Charlie and Lola’s Best Bestest Play on September 17 and Stig of The Dump on October 22.

As Christmas approaches, there will be another chance to celebrate The Dukes special anniversary when top comedy variety troupe Slightly Fat Features return with a brand new cabaret from December 15-17.

To book tickets for any of the new season events, ring The Dukes box office on 01524 598500 or visit





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