This year we celebrate 80 years of Dundee Rep Theatre, 20 years of our resident acting Ensemble and 10 years of our Enterprise work experience program – culminating in a season celebrating Dundee Rep, and our amazing city of Dundee.

In celebration of this very special year, we are pulling out all the stops for our 80th Anniversary season, bringing the best and most exciting work to the heart of Dundee and beyond. We are excited to announce our full 2019-20 programme of work. 2019 is an opportunity to reflect on our history and success while looking forward to the exciting future ahead.

We’re celebrating our 80th year with stories that have a particular resonance to our special city of Dundee, and can also reach beyond to the wider world. The first new piece of work to hit our stage is written especially for the Ensemble - a powerful mood piece that tells the stories of those caught in the famous bridge disaster that fated night in 1879. Tay Bridge is a heartfelt and moving portrait of an era penned by Peter Arnott, one of Scotland’s most iconic writers, and it kicks off Dundee Rep’s anniversary season of local stories straight from the heart of Dundee.

From Rio to Murthly, to Kirriemuir and Ardler, A-Z of Dundee comes home to the Rep stage this Autumn after a successful tour to local community centres earlier this year. Directed by Ensemble member Ewan Donald, this anarchic celebration of Dundee returns to delight and entertain audiences with an action-packed alphabetical journey through the city’s history.

Christmas begins early this year as Scotland’s cheekiest, spiky-haired scamp is back.The highly-anticipated world premiere musical, Oor Wullie opens this November before touring the country in 2020, in partnership with internationally acclaimed Selladoor Worldwide. We’re also delighted to continue Dundee Rep’s collaboration with award-winning writing partnership Noisemaker, following last year’s hugely successful Christmas show, The Snow Queen, and brand new musical, Hi My Name is Ben, which premiered in the US this Spring. Emily Mouse returns as a seasonal treat for our younger audiences, penned by beloved children’s writer Vivian French and featuring Ensemble member Emily Winter.

In February, we tell the story of one of Dundee’s most provocative sporting characters, Jim Maclean, in Smile. Penned by theatre and television writer Philip Differ (Only an Excuse?) and directed by Sally Reid, this funny, moving and surprisingly honest new play will celebrate the memories of a difficult yet inspirational man, ultimately revealing a Jim McLean you never knew: a Jim McLean that will make you smile.

To round off our season in Spring 2020, Rep Ensemble’s Irene Macdougall directs a new production of one of Shakespeare’s most controversial plays. A play which is all at once dark, comedic and entertaining. Measure for Measure is an exploration of the hypocrisy of power, the dispensation of justice, and the power of mercy.

This year we also welcome new Artistic Director, Joan Clevillé, to Scottish Dance Theatre. Having previously danced with the company, Joan has built a reputation in the Scottish dance community and developed international demand for his work. We’re thrilled that he has joined us at this exciting time.

Scottish Dance Theatre is proud to stand as a creative ambassador for Dundee as we embark on a four-week tour to South America, visiting and performing in four cities across three countries, before returning home to perform in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for the tenth time at ZOO Southside. Fresh from its South America performances, Colette Sadler’s RITUALIAwill be presented as part of the British Council Edinburgh Showcase 2019, before a nightly dance, party and politics experience with 7Oito’s Looping: Scotland Overdub. In Dundee, audiences will have another chance to see The Circle and Process Day in a powerful new Double Bill, and Looping: Scotland Overdub will take its Brazilian street-festival inspired ceilidh to places where people meet, greet and celebrate right here at home. Great Big Dance Show, our family-friendly celebration of dance, now spans two acts in two unforgettable evenings of dance in November and in December, Sputnik, a programme of bold new work created and performed by our company dancers, will be presented in Scottish Dance Theatre’s studio at home at Dundee Rep. You can get involved too, at our regular dance classes with something for all ages and levels of experience.

Scottish Dance Theatre Artistic Director, Joan Clevillé says;

Being back at Dundee Rep is an exhilarating experience, an opportunity to work with an extremely talented and committed group of artists, practitioners and administrators who are passionate about making high quality dance and theatre for everyone. After just a couple of months as Artistic Director of Scottish Dance Theatre, I am impressed by the breadth and ambition of the company’s artistic programme.”

This season of celebration welcomes plenty of exciting visiting work, beginning with Ian McKellen on Stage in August. Sir Ian then ushers in a variety of productions including the classic Jane Eyre, choreographer Wayne McGregor’s award-winning Autobiography, and comedy from Tommy Tiernan, Craig Hill, and TapeFace. Younger audiences will be enthralled by Scottish Ballet’s Wee Hansel and Gretel, as well as Slug, Little Red and Whirlybird. We’re also excited to announce that Francis Rossi from Status Quo will be performing in Spring 2020.

Artistic Director and Joint-Chief Executive, Andrew Panton tells us about what audiences can expect this season;

“Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre sit at the very heart of Dundee’s cultural landscape and so what better way to celebrate 80 years of the Rep than with stories that come from the city and its people. We’re very proud of the work we make with our dancers and our actors and we’re looking forward to celebrating 20 years of our resident acting Ensemble with a very special season of work. From everyone here at Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre we hope that you’ll join us for our celebratory season”

Dundee Rep was founded just five days after World War II began, at a moment of immense global significance when the need of artistic expression and reflection were all too real. In another 80 years time, we will be on the cusp of the 22nd century. We believe that over the coming years, organisations like Dundee Rep and Scottish Dance Theatre will be vital in helping to shape the world through the ideas and stories that we create, present and engage in.