Salisbury Playhouse to revive John Godber’s September in the Rain

Wiltshire Creative has announced that Salisbury Playhouse will reopen with a revival of John Godber’s September in the Rain

September in the Rain Salisbury
Artwork for September in the Rain at Salisbury Playhouse

A revival of John Godber’s play, September in the Rain, has been announced as the first production when Salisbury Playhouse reopens.

The play, directed by the theatre’s artistic director Gareth Machin, will run from 16 September to 9 October 2021, with opening night on 17 September.

It will precede the previously announced world premiere of The Lemon Table, based on Julian Barnes’ short stories and adapted and performed by Ian McDiarmid, running from 14 to 23 October ahead of a tour.

In a statement, Gareth Machin and executive director Sebastian Warrack of theatre operator Wiltshire Creative said: “It’s an utter joy to fill our stage once again and welcome audiences back to share in the thrill of live performance.

“Theatres are made to share stories, and we can’t wait to share our autumn season, opening with John Godber’s moving and funny play September in the Rain, coupled with the world première of Julian Barnes’ The Lemon Table – a wry observation on ageing – ahead of a national tour.”

September in the Rain, originally staged in 1983, moves backwards and forward through time, charting a married life through squabbles, children, laughter and tears against the backdrop of the heyday of the British seaside.

Starting in 1950, newly-wed Yorkshire couple Jack and Liz have crossed the Pennines for their first trip to the seaside mecca of Blackpool. Beneath an uncertain September sky, they holiday in a world of stripy deckchairs, sandy sandwiches and stroppy donkeys. As the Wurlitzer organ plays they sway together on the dance floor of the Tower Ballroom.

For 30 years, come rain or shine, they never miss their annual week-long holiday on the Blackpool sands. Three decades of boarding houses, talent contests and fish and chips on the prom.

Godber, whose other plays include Up ‘n’ Under, Bouncers and Teechers, has said he was inspired to write September in the Rain by memories of his grandparents.

The creative team also includes designer Toots Butcher, lighting designer Johanna Town, sound designer Andrea J Cox and casting director Gabrielle Dawes.

Tickets go on sale for priority booking on 6 July 2021 and on general release on 9 July.

wiltshirecreative.co.uk

About Mark Ludmon 251 Articles
Mark Ludmon has been a journalist for over 20 years, specialising in theatre as well as hospitality and drinks after starting out on regional daily newspapers. He has an MA in early modern literature and history, focusing on Elizabethan and Jacobean drama, and a theatre studies MA from Royal Central School of Speech & Drama. He has also been on the judging panel for the Olivier Awards. He can be found tweeting as @MarkLudmon and writing about theatre at https://markludmon.com.