Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre to Feature Alan Ayckbourn World Premiere | Playbill

International News Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre to Feature Alan Ayckbourn World Premiere Ayckbourn’s 1979 play Taking Steps will also be revived.

The summer season at Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre, the Yorkshire theatre that has long been Alan Ayckbourn’s theatrical home, is to feature two plays by the comedy maestro: the world premiere of his latest, called A Brief History of Women; and a revival of Taking Steps, a play that originally premiered at Scarborough in 1979 before going on to the West End in 1980 and then Broadway in 1991.

The world premiere of A Brief History of Women will begin performances September 1 for a run in repertoire through October 7, and will be directed by the playwright. Described as a comedy in four parts about an unremarkable man and the remarkable women who loved him, left him, or lost him over sixty years; and of the equally remarkable old manor house that saw and heard it all happen, the play charts the romantic progress of a man called Anthony Spates.

Taking Steps will begin performances July 13 for a run in repertoire through October 5. The play revolves around a tongue-tied solicitor Tristram who is sent to oversee the sale of a large and crumbling house, reputedly a haunted former brothel. But hardware tycoon Roland Crabbe and scheming builder Leslie Bainbridge are not easy clients and Roland’s wife, Elizabeth, is on the brink of leaving with the help of her brother Mark and his shrinking-violet fiancée, Kitty. Misunderstandings multiply and play out in every corner of the three-storey house.

Both productions will be designed by Kevin Jenkins with lighting by Jason Taylor.

The season will also include a revival of Jim Cartwright’s The Rise and Fall of Little Voice (running in repertoire June 15 to August 19), and the regional premiere of Amelia Bullmore’s comedy Di and Viv and Rose (running in repertoire August 3 to August 26).

To book tickets and for full dates, contact the box office on 01723 370541 or visit


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