Twelfth Night

Adapted by Kelly Hunter and Tom Chapman

"First Mention"  Festival Internacional de Teatro Clasico Almagro 2017

"hauntingly exquisite music, hand-made magic and everyday miracles"

Viola is saved from drowning with a bucket of freezing water and welcomed into Illyria by a mysterious clown who leads us all on a melodious and dreamlike odyssey.

With nothing but instruments, costumes and props that may have been washed up on a beach, the cast of seven actors are swung between characters, between actor and musician, and between love and madness by the whirligig of the play. The result is a painfully funny and hopelessly romantic version of this classic, exploring the ecstasy and grief of falling in love for the first time. For anyone who’s ever been in love, or is fed by a love of music.

“Hamlet and Twelfth Night  were written at the same time  – believed to have been written in the same year and it seemed to me that Shakespeare had used Twelfth Night to pull himself out of the “cave of Hamlet”. The same themes; madness, grief, trauma, losing a loved one, being in love are present but whereas in Hamlet there is a drowning in Twelfth Night  characters are saved…

Around the time that we were creating Twelfth Night I attended the reading of Primo Levi’s ‘If this is a man’ at the South Bank Centre to commemorate the 70thanniversary of his book and lo and behold chapter 9 of this book is called ‘The Drowned and the Saved’. Something exploded in my brain, and my heart and my soul -here was a profound articulation of everything I was trying to explore and here I understood that the drowning of Ophelia becomes the saving of Viola…” Kelly Hunter

First performed at the Festival International de Teatro Clasico Almagro in 2017 and then at the International Shakespeare Festival Craiova and Teatrul Nottara, Romania 2108, Bonnington Square Square Gardens, Open Garden Square Weekend 2018 and Neuss Globe Shakespeare Festival 2018.


Tom Chapman - Orsino
Finlay Cormack - Maria
Paul Gorostidi - Sebastian/Sir Andrew
Richard Leeming - Malvolio
Bathsheba Piepe - Olivia/Sir Toby
Paula Rodriguez - Viola
Joshua Sneesby - Antonio

R&D Cast

Aretha Ayeh
Tom Chapman
Finlay Cormack
Edward Harrison
Joshua James
Francesca Zoutewelle

Director & Adaptor – Kelly Hunter

Composer – Tom Chapman

Lighting Designer – Jenny Roxburgh

Company Stage Managers – Carmel Macaree and Alys Woodhead

Producer for Spring 2018 – Emma Groome