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Horrible Histories – Dreadful Deaf – Deafinitely not for the faint-hearted!

Deafinitely Theatre and Birmingham Stage Company have announced the world première Horrible HistoriesDreadful Deaf – Deafinitely not for the faint-hearted!. It will run from 29th May until the end of June 2019 across the UK.

The Birmingham Stage Company has produced Horrible Histories live on stage across the UK and throughout the world since 2005. It has now teamed up with Deafinitely Theatre to create the first dedicated production for deaf children and their families.

Artistic Director of Deafinitely Theatre, Paula Garfield, directs, reuniting her creative team from Deafinitely’s sell-out production of Sarah Kane’s 4.48 Psychosis in 2018.

Dreadful Deaf has a special school’s performance at Heathlands School in St Albans on 24th of May before opening at Bristol Old Vic Theatre on 29th of May and 1st of June. The show then tours to York Theatre Royal on 7th and 8th of June, and The North Wall in Oxford on 18th of June. It will then complete its run at Derby Theatre on 22nd and 23rd of June. Further dates and casting will be announced soon.

We all want to meet people from history. The trouble is everyone is deaf dead!

So it’s time to prepare yourselves for Horrible Histories live on stage as it delves into the dreadful, dangerous and deluded stories of the deaf! From groovy Greeks to gorgeous Georgians, ruthless Romans to vile Victorians, come with us into this incredible world to discover the extraordinary people and amazing stories you simply won’t believe!

Deaf or hearing, this bilingual production – in spoken English and British Sign Language – is a truly frightful treat for all the family!

Director, Paula Garfield said: “A few years ago I watched my deaf children reading and enjoying Horrible Histories and I was struck by the thought that it would be wonderful for them to have a ‘Deaf Horrible Histories’, showcasing the stories, culture and communities of deaf people throughout history.

I also wanted to ensure that deaf children today, whether signing or non-signing, can understand the history of their community and feel a sense of belonging and legacy. Horrible Histories is a fun, exciting way to learn and our bilingual production is designed for all to enjoy. I am delighted to be collaborating with Birmingham Stage Company to create this world-first production: Horrible Histories – Dreadful Deaf!” 

Actor and manager Neal Foster said: “When Deafinitely Theatre approached me with their idea of creating a new show specifically for deaf children I jumped at the chance.

One of the joys of creating Horrible Histories stage shows is going through the learning experience yourself, so not only did I think this was a fantastic idea for a show, but I was also excited to learn the history of deaf people through the lens of Horrible Histories.

It’s proved to be as exciting as I first imagined and we can’t wait to share the show with deaf and hearing people – it’s a fascinating subject for theatre.” 

About Deafinitely Theatre

Deafinitely Theatre is the UK’s first professional deaf-launched and led theatre company, creating bilingual productions of classic and contemporary plays for deaf and hearing audiences that combine the visual storytelling of British Sign Language with the immediacy of spoken English.

Established in 2002, the company’s vision is a world where deaf people are a valued part of the national theatre landscape, recognised for the excellence of their work. Deafinitely challenges barriers to training and opportunities, working hard to nurture the next generation of deaf theatre-makers and audiences through its continuing programme of productions, consultancy work and education and training activities for young people and adults.

The company’s most recent productions include 2018’s sold-out run of 4.48 Psychosis by Sarah Kane at New Diorama Theatre and Derby Theatre and 2017’s award-winning production of Contractions by Mike Bartlett at ND2 (New Diorama Theatre) – winner of the 2018 Off West End Award for Best Production.

By Deafinitely Theatre and Birmingham Stage Company

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