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New Helen Forrester play ‘By The Waters Of Liverpool’ gears up for Spring 2020 UK tour

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Headline cast set for 17-venue national tour opening in March with North West Dates

In less than two months, the brand new stage production of Helen Forrester’s By The Waters Of Liverpool embarks on a 17-venue tour across the UK.

By The Waters Of Liverpool Spring 2020 UK Tour will open on Tuesday 3 March at the New Brighton Floral Pavilion in Wirral – just a few miles from where Helen Forrester was born.

And in celebration of Helen Forrester’s 100th Birthday, an iconic Blue Plaque will be unveiled at a special event in February at the late author’s family home in Hoylake – a place which featured heavily in Helen’s four volumes of  best-selling autobiography, including Twopence To Cross The Mersey.

The 11-week national tour follows a hugely successful run at the Liverpool Empire Theatre in October 2018, when the new production was premiered to rave reviews.

Following on from the Floral Pavilion in New Brighton, the show will visit venues in Stockport, Warrington, St Helens, Lancaster, Crewe, Southport, Rhyl, Swansea, Darlington, Malvern, Eastbourne, Isle Of Man, Hayes, Winchester, Liverpool and Blackpool.

By The Waters Of Liverpool is a stunning period drama produced by the team that brought the smash hit Twopence To Cross The Mersey to the stage.

The stellar cast features star names from stage and screen, including Sian Reeves and Mark Moraghan.

Sian has recently been seen in living rooms across the country appearing in Coronation Street – the world’s longest running TV soap opera. And she will be returning to the cobbles in late January as part of a key storyline.

The touring cast also features Parry Glasspool, Lucy Dixon, Eric Potts, Lynn Francis, Danny O’Brien, Roy Carruthers, and Chloe McDonald.

West Bromwich born Sian Reeves is an original cast member of the 1985 stage production of Les Misérables. She also later appeared in the 25th anniversary performance at London’s O2. Sian has already shared a stage with fellow cast member Mark Moraghan in celebrity TV singing contest, Just The Two Of Us – when Sian and opera singer Russell Watson won the competition. Sian’s television credits also include Casualty, Cutting It, Holby City and, more recently Coronation Street. Theatre credits include West Side Story, Love Me Tender, The Merchant Of Venice, and The Little Match Girl.

Mark Moraghan is best known for his role as medic Owen Davies in Holby City. Other TV credits include Coronation Street, London’s Burning and Brookside. He has also appeared in Celebrity Masterchef, and was runner-up in TV singing contest Just The Two Of Us with Natasha Hamilton. Mark also made numerous guest appearances on Harry Enfield & Chums. Following in the tracks of Ringo Starr and Michael Angelis, Mark is now the voice of Thomas The Tank Engine. Theatre credits include My Fair Lady, MacBeth and Little Miss Sunshine.

Parry Glasspool is best known for playing Harry Thompson in Hollyoaks. He was born and raised in the Midlands, before moving to London to study for his BA Hons in Acting for Stage and Media at the University of West London. After five years in Hollyoaks, Parry recently made a dramatic exit in a high-profile storyline when he was murdered. Parry’s other television credits include Hollyoaks Later, Our Zoo, and film The Cutting Room. He was nominated for Best Newcomer at the prestigious National Television Awards in 2016.

Lucy Dixon hails from Greater Manchester. She is widely known for her television roles as Danielle Harker in Waterloo Road and Tilly Evans in Hollyoaks. Lucy received a nomination for Best Actress at the TV Choice Awards in 2012 for her portrayal of Tilly. The following year, she also featured on the longlist for Best Serial Drama Performance at the National Television Awards 2013. Lucy’s other TV credits include Birds Of A Feather, Casualty, Scott & Bailey, and Doctors. Theatre credits include Sweet Charity, The Girl From The Ward, Lord Of The Flies, and Peter Pan.

Eric Potts has been a regular face on TV screens for more than 20 years. The Scottish-born actor is best known for playing the eccentric baker Diggory Compton in Coronation Street. His other screen credits include Doctor Who, Heartbeat, The Royal, Last Of The Summer Wine, and Emmerdale. Eric’s theatre credits include Twelfth Night, Brassed Off, Footloose, and The Merry Wives Of Windsor.

Lynn Francis is a familiar face on theatre stages in Liverpool. Credits include Ladies Day, A Nightmare On Lime Street, Twopence To Cross The Mersey, and The Salon. On screen, she has appeared in Reds & Blues, The Ballad Of Dixie & Kenny, and Charlie Noades RIP. Lynn also worked alongside Ian Hart and Dougray Scott in The Lie Is Dead.

Returning to By The Waters Of Liverpool is Danny O’Brien. Danny recently played a starring role in the new stage play Lennon’s Banjo. His screen credits include House Of Anubis on Nickelodeon, and Good Cop. Theatre credits include Stags And Hens, Lost Souls, The Star, The Salon, The Rainbow Connection and Bouncers.

Roy Carruthers has featured in Twopence To Cross The Mersey and Lennon’s Banjo. His other theatre credits include Ladies Night, Funny Money, Night Collar, and The Price by Arthur Miller. Screen credits include Good Cop, Longford, and Sparkle.

Chloe McDonald is a graduate of the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts. She has recently performed in Liverpool’s Unity Theatre, as well at fringe festivals in Edinburgh, Lahti and Gothenburg. Credits include The Pride, The Love Of The Nightingale, and Romeo And Juliet.

The new touring production of By The Waters Of Liverpool is again produced by Pulse Records Limited in association with Bill Elms and is directed by Gareth Tudor Price.

Writer and friend of Helen Forrester, Rob Fennah has written both the stage play versions of Twopence To Cross The Mersey and By The Waters Of Liverpool.

Rob Fennah commented: “Although Helen is no longer with us, she is always in my thoughts. While I was writing By The Waters Of Liverpool, I imagined her looking over my shoulder to check all the little details were correct and in order. Even after all these years on from adapting Twopence To Cross The Mersey, I can still hear her voice in my head saying, ‘Make sure you get it right Rob, this is my life we’re talking about here!’. It’s a real privilege to be entrusted with her most famous works, but also a huge responsibility.”

This new production of By The Waters Of Liverpool also features sizeable chunks from Helen’s earlier book Liverpool Miss, together with flashbacks to Twopence To Cross The Mersey.

Rob added: “I’ve even managed to weave in a storyline from Helen’s fourth autobiography, Lime Street At Two. That way, the audience get a complete picture of her life. To make all this possible we use a technique called ‘story theatre’ whereby the actors form part of the landscape itself and take on multiple roles – over 50 different characters. It’s a fluid and very theatrical way of presenting such an epic tale and has proved to be a huge hit with our audiences.”

Helen Forrester’s son, Robert Bhatia, said“The partnership between playwright Rob Fennah and my mother Helen, and her legacy, has been outstanding.”

By The Waters Of Liverpool is set in the 1930s after Helen’s father went bankrupt during the Depression. Her family were forced to leave behind the nannies, servants and comfortable middle-class life in the South West of England. The Forresters chose Liverpool to rebuild their shattered lives, but they were in for a terrible shock. Taken out of school to look after her young siblings, Helen is treated as an unpaid slave. So begins a bitter fight with her parents for the right to go out to work and make her own way in life. But by 1939 and with Britain on the verge of war, Helen now aged 20, has still never been kissed by a man. But things start looking up for her when she meets a tall strong seaman and falls in love.

By The Waters Of Liverpool has sold more than a million books. Now this is your chance to see it come to life in this brand new stage play adaptation.

Helen Forrester’s best-selling volumes of autobiography include Twopence To Cross The Mersey, Liverpool Miss, By The Waters Of Liverpool, and Lime Street At Two.

Adapted by Rob Fennah   ·   Directed by Gareth Tudor Price

Produced by Pulse Records Limited in association with Bill Elms

Fully endorsed by the Helen Forrester Estate

 

Website:         www.bythewatersofliverpool.com

Facebook:       www.facebook.com/ByTheWatersThePlay

 

LISTING INFORMATION

 

HELEN FORRESTER’S

BY THE WATERS OF LIVERPOOL

 

FLORAL PAVILION

Tuesday 3 March – Sunday 8 March 2020

Marine Promenade, New Brighton, Wirral, CH45 2JS

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.floralpavilion.com

Box Office:      0151 666 0000

 

STOCKPORT PLAZA

Tuesday 10 March – Thursday 12 March 2020

Mersey Square, Stockport, SK1 1SP

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.stockportplaza.co.uk

Box Office:      0161 477 7779

 

WARRINGTON PARR HALL

Saturday 14 March – Sunday 15 March 2020

Palmyra Square, Warrington, WA1 1BL

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          parrhall.culturewarrington.org/whats-on

Box Office:      01925 442345

 

ST HELENS THEATRE ROYAL

Tuesday 17 March – Saturday 21 March 2020

Corporation Street, St Helens, WA10 1LQ

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.sthelenstheatreroyal.com

Box Office:      01744 756000

 

LANCASTER GRAND THEATRE

Monday 23 March – Tuesday 24 March 2020

St Leonardgate, Lancaster, LA1 1QW

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.lancastergrand.co.uk

Box Office:      01524 64695

 

CREWE LYCEUM

Wednesday 25 March – Thursday 26 March 2020

Heath Street, Crewe, CW1 2DA

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.crewelyceum.co.uk

Box Office:      01270 368242

 

SOUTHPORT THEATRE

Friday 27 March – Saturday 28 March 2020

The Promenade, Southport, PR9 0DZ

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.waterfrontsouthport.co.uk/events/whats-on

Box Office:      01704 500036

 

PAVILION THEATRE RHYL

Tuesday 31 March – Saturday 4 April 2020

East Parade, Rhyl, LL18 3AQ

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.rhylpavilion.co.uk

Box Office:      01745 330000

 

GRAND THEATRE SWANSEA

Monday 6 April – Tuesday 7 April 2020

Singleton Street, Swansea, SA1 3QJ

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.swansea.gov.uk/swanseagrandtheatre

Box Office:      01792 475715

 

DARLINGTON HIPPODROME

Thursday 9 April – Saturday 11 April 2020

Parkgate, Darlington, DL1 1RR

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.darlingtonhippodrome.co.uk

Box Office:      01325 405405

 

MALVERN THEATRES

Tuesday 14 April – Wednesday 15 April 2020

Grange Road, Malvern, WR14 3HB

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.malvern-theatres.co.uk

Box Office:      01684 892277

 

DEVONSHIRE PARK THEATRE EASTBOURNE

Friday 17 April – Saturday 18 April 2020

Compton Street, Eastbourne, BN21 4BW

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.eastbournetheatres.co.uk

Box Office:      01323 412000

 

GAIETY THEATRE ISLE OF MAN

Thursday 23 April – Saturday 25 April 2020

Villa Marina, Douglas, Isle Of Man, IM1 2HJ

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.villagaiety.com

Box Office:      01624 600555

 

BECK THEATRE HAYES

Monday 27 April – Tuesday 28 April 2020

Grange Road, Hayes, Middlesex, UB3 2UE

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          becktheatre.org.uk

Box Office:      020 85618371

 

THEATRE ROYAL WINCHESTER

Thursday 30 April – Saturday 2 May 2020

21-23 Jewry Street, Winchester, SO23 8SB

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.theatreroyalwinchester.co.uk

Box Office:      01962 840440

 

EPSTEIN THEATRE LIVERPOOL

Monday 4 May – Saturday 9 May 2020

Hanover House, 85 Hanover Street, Liverpool, L1 3DZ

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.epsteinliverpool.co.uk

Box Office:      0844 888 4411

 

GRAND THEATRE BLACKPOOL

Monday 11 May – Wednesday 13 May 2020

33 Church Street, Blackpool, FY1 1HT

Tickets from £22 plus booking fee

Website:          www.blackpoolgrand.co.uk

Box Office:      01253 290190

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