From bear baiting to fornicating and drama to debauchery, Southwark was the entertainment hub of Tudor London. We descended beneath the Southwark Streets to meet Josh McTaggart and Joel Fisher, two rising stars of British Theatre and the creative team behind London’s newest underground theatre – The Bunker.
Today’s Southwark is already home to the Union Theatre, the Southwark Playhouse and Menier Chocolate Factory and now there’s a new kid on the block: The Bunker is a brand new theatre, opening in a former underground car park in Southwark Street and is the capital’s newest contemporary Off-West End venue.
Executive Producer Joel Fisher comments, This part of London is quickly becoming a cultural hub with developments at Tate Modern and the Globe and the London Theatre Company taking up residency at One Tower Bridge…We want to share ideas with the theatres around us and find new and exciting ways of collaborating.
Running from October 2016 until January 2017, The inaugural season includes the exciting transfer of a new Philip Ridley production and a transfer of Isley Lynn’s award-winning Skin a Cat which sold out at the 2016 VAULT Festival. The Bunker will also host a brand new musical during the Christmas period, and present a double bill of Irish plays in the new year.
Artistic Director Joshua McTaggart says, The Bunker is a place [where you can] meet the creatives involved and talk about the piece with your peers. It has been a privilege to curate a first season that brings together some of the best emerging and established talent this country has to offer.
The renovated space includes a 110-seat auditorium, bar space, office space, technical booth, and dressing rooms.
The exciting inaugural autumn season is as follows:
Rive Productions and The Bunker presents
Skin a Cat
12th October – 5th November
Isley Lynn’s Skin a Cat follows Alana on an awkward sexual odyssey with a kaleidoscope of off-kilter characters: from getting her first period at nine years old and freaking out her frantic mother, to watching bad porn at a house party with her best friend’s boyfriend.
Metal Rabbit Productions presents
Tonight with Donny Stixx
8th November – 3rd December
Tonight with Donny Stixx by Philip Ridley is the companion piece to his 2013 Fringe First-winner and Soho Theatre sell-out hit Dark Vanilla Jungle. Donny has committed an act that shocked everyone. Tabloids called him The Most Hated Boy Alive. But Donny doesn’t want forgiveness. All Donny wants is… his own television show.
Interval Productions present
7th December – 7th January
New musical Muted, written by Sarah Henley, composed by Tim Prottey-Jones, with additional lyrics by Tori Allen-Martin. At seventeen, Michael Brookman was the exceptionally talented lead singer of Lost Boy, a band on the brink of stardom, when his mother, Amanda, was killed in a hit and run accident. Fast-forward three years. Michael hasn’t uttered a word since Amanda’s death. Then one day, the love of his life appears at Michael’s door to see if she can make him speak, or even sing, once again.
Stephen Fry “Stunning”
Mark Shenton “The British RENT”
Abigail and Come on Over
10th January – 4th February 2017
For the final production of the season, The Bunker will present a double bill of Irish plays by two of the country’s most exciting writers. The world premiere of Fiona Doyle’s Abigail will play alongside Conor McPherson’s Come On Over in an evening that explores two very different but intimate relationships of love, power and dark secrets. Directed by Joshua McTaggart, The Bunker’s Artistic Director, and Sara Joyce, The Bunker’s Associate Director, this pair of gripping tales show the lengths we go to in order to be loved, cared for and protected.
All main house shows run from Tuesday to Sunday with matinees on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.
The Bunker, 53A Southwark Street London SE1 1RU
Visit The Bunker online
Follow The Bunker on Twitter @BunkerTheatreUK
Joel Fisher is a producer of new theatre, musicals, and opera. His recent production credits include Stalking the Bogeyman (Southwark Playhouse), Princess Caraboo (Finborough Theatre), The Clown of Clowns (Arcola Theatre) and Sideshows (Kings Place and Edinburgh Fringe Festival).
Joel has worked with Bill Kenwright Limited, OperaUpClose, Opera della Luna, English Touring Opera and Constella Ballet and Orchestra. Productions include the Olivier Award-winning La Bohème (London & UK Tour), the Olivier Award-winning The Siege of Calais (London & UK Tour), How the Other Half Loves (Theatre Royal Haymarket), The War of the Worlds (Dominion Theatre), La Fille Du Regiment (Iford Arts Festival), Orpheus in the Underworld (The Lowry, Manchester), The Elixir of Love (UK tour), The Barber of Seville (UK Tour), The Gondoliers (The Lowry, Manchester) and The Wildman of the West Indies (UK Tour).
He is also developing new British musicals as Artistic Director of Fisher Taylor-Gaunt Productions and recently showcased three of them in the sell-out showcase Under Construction (St. James Studio).
Joel trained at the University of Manchester and with Stage One and The Young Vic.
Joshua McTaggart is a theatre director and dramaturg with a special interest in developing new writing. His recent productions as director include King of the Fuckin’ Castle (VAULT Festival), Marching on Together (Old Red Lion and West Yorkshire tour), Honest Poverty (Vibrant Festival, Finborough Theatre), and Let the Mind Wander (Tabard Theatre).
Joshua was the General Manager for HighTide Festival Theatre in 2015 and in 2014 he was the Resident Assistant Director at the Finborough Theatre where he assisted on Coolatully, Floeurs O’Edinburgh and Come Home Badger Gash.
Joshua studied History at Harvard University where he also took classes in directing with the Artistic Director of the American Repertory Theatre (ART), Tony Award-winning Diane Paulus. He shadowed Diane in rehearsals for Pippin before it transferred to Broadway, and he was the Associate Director for the ART’s production of Taylor Mac’s The Lily’s Revenge.
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