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Newbury premiere for stage adaptation of Bill Bryson's Notes From a Small Island





Rehearsals are well under way for the Watermill's brand-new stage adaption of Bill Bryson’s award-winning memoir Notes From a Small Island, affectionately celebrating the quirks and eccentricities of British life.

Adapted by BAFTA and Olivier Award-winning playwright Tim Whitnall (Les Dawson: Flying High – UK Tour, Morecambe – West End, Best Possible Taste: The Kenny Everett Story – BBC4). Directed by The Watermill’s Artistic Director Paul Hart, designed by Katie Lias and produced in association with Simon Friend Entertainment, Notes from a Small Island kicks off the theatre’s spring season next Friday, February 3 and will star Olivier-nominated Mark Hadfield (Thérèse Raquin – Olivier, NT, Into the Woods – Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), as ‘Bill Bryson’.

Starring alongside Mark in this world premiere, playing to Saturday, March 18, are Bryony Corrigan (The Play That Goes Wrong – West End & Broadway, Magic Goes Wrong & Peter Pan Goes Wrong – West End), Wendy Nottingham (Vera Drake, Mr Selfridge, Peaky Blinders), Anne Odeke (As You Like It, The Merry Wives of Windsor & The Comedy of Errors – Shakespeare’s Globe), Steve Pinder (Brookside, C4, Wicked – UK and Ireland tour), Akshay Sharan (Jack Absolute Flies Again – National Theatre, 2018 Stage Debut Award for ‘Best Actor in a Play’ for The Reluctant Fundamentalist –Yard Theatre) and Hayden Wood (The Play That Goes Wrong & Doctor Who: Time Fracture – West End, Richard II – Arcola).

Director Paul Hart - cMarc Brenner
Director Paul Hart - cMarc Brenner
Anne Odeke, Akshay Sharan, Wendy Nottingham, Hayden Wood, cMarc Brenner
Anne Odeke, Akshay Sharan, Wendy Nottingham, Hayden Wood, cMarc Brenner
Bryony Corrigan cMarc Brenner
Bryony Corrigan cMarc Brenner
Anne Odeke, cMarc Brenner
Anne Odeke, cMarc Brenner

What makes us love this country we call our own?

From Calais to Scotland, Bill Bryson travels the length and breadth of Britain. Why does the nation that produced Marmite, Gardener’s Question Time and people who say “Ooh lovely” at the sight of a cup of tea, hold such a special place in this American’s heart?

Notes from a Small Island spent three years in the Sunday Times bestsellers list, sold over two million copies and was voted on World Book Day by BBC Radio 4 listeners as the book that best represents our British identity.

Akshay Sharan, Stephen Pinder, cMarc Brenner
Akshay Sharan, Stephen Pinder, cMarc Brenner
Steven Pinder, Mark Hadfield, cMarc Brenner
Steven Pinder, Mark Hadfield, cMarc Brenner
Wendy Nottingham, Hayden Wood, cMarc Brenner
Wendy Nottingham, Hayden Wood, cMarc Brenner
Hayden Wood, cMarc Brenner
Hayden Wood, cMarc Brenner

With signature invention and imagination, the production will embrace the full breadth and playfulnessof Bryson’s life affirming travelogue in The Watermill’s fittingly intimate, quintessentially rural space.

Tim Whitnall said: “It’s been both a privilege and a delight to have distilled Bill Bryson’s hilarious and affecting 379-page travelogue into a two-act stage play. This wonderful book has been a firm favourite of mine since its publication, and I’m still pinching myself to believe I’ve been permitted anywhere near it as a playwright!”

Book online at www.watermill.org.uk or telephone the box office on (01635) 46044.



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