Hull Truck Theatre is reopening its doors this June with a trilogy of captivating monologues featuring acclaimed actors Julie Hesmondhalgh, John Middleton and Gabriel Paul, two of which are world premieres and have been commissioned by the city centre theatre.
The three shows, which take place across various nights in June and July, mark a major milestone for Hull Truck as it reopens to the public for the first time since last March, when forced to close due to the pandemic.
Exploring the themes of love, loss and identity, the two new commissions touch on important global issues whilst remaining rooted in Hull. As well as being shown in the theatre to a socially distanced, 25% capacity audience, the monologues will be available to stream at home, taking the joy of regional theatre across the country.
Making its world premiere at the renowned theatre from 1-10 July is ‘Hull & High Water’, written by Hull born playwright Janet Plater, best known for the 2016 production ‘The Gaul’, also with Hull Truck Theatre. Starring award-winning John Middleton, known for his 21-year tenure as Vicar Ashley Thomas in ‘Emmerdale’, ‘Hull & High Water’ tells the story of Frank Piddock, a man living with dementia who is on the run from his care home. In this moving story, Frank hitches his way around Hull, each familiar landmark sparking a memory and the chance to crack a joke.
Another Hull Truck Theatre production making its debut is ‘Everything I Own’, written by Daniel Ward (‘The Canary and the Crow’, for which he won a Writer’s Guild Award) and directed by Amanda Huxtable (‘Abigail’s Party’, previously Artistic Associate and Change Maker at Hull Truck Theatre) and appearing from 17-26 June.
The moving story sees Errol, played by Gabriel Paul, tragically lose his savvy, music-loving Dad to Covid. Listening to his old man’s Spotify playlist, Errol sorts through his possessions and celebrates the man who moved his family from Jamaica to Hull and grafted hard to give them a new start. Between tots of rum he reflects on his Dad’s passion over the 1981 Brixton uprising and his certainty that change was round the corner, whilst wrangling with his feelings towards his own son’s fight as part of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Launching the trilogy from 7-12 June is BAFTA award-winning Julie Hesmondhalgh, best known for her role as Hayley Cropper in ‘Coronation Street’ and currently starring in BBC One drama ‘The Pact’, in ‘The Greatest Play In The History of The World’. The acclaimed one-woman show has won The Stage Edinburgh Award, was a 2018 Fringe sell-out show and is now in Hull as part of a nationwide tour.
Mark Babych, Artistic Director of Hull Truck Theatre, says: “We’re absolutely delighted to have such a high calibre of shows for our reopening. Julie, John and Gabriel are outstanding actors and the three monologues are each so unique and incredibly powerful in their own way. It will be momentous to see audiences back in the theatre, and the fact that we can livestream the shows and welcome new audiences to Hull Truck is a wonderful thing.”
Janthi Mills-Ward, Executive Director at Hull Truck, adds: “Like for so many venues around the country, it’s been an incredibly difficult year and we’re so pleased that we can finally safely welcome audiences back to Hull Truck. Behind the scenes the team has been working tirelessly to make the theatre safe and welcoming, and we’re counting down the days until we have a live audience again. The support of the local community has been invaluable in the last year and we hope that support will continue as we reopen.”
For more information, dates and tickets, please visit www.hulltruck.co.uk.