May Queen to be re-staged at the Belgrade this summer

Frankie Meredith’s May Queen, which premiered last summer as part of Paines Plough’s Roundabout Season, will be re-staged in-the-round in B2 from Sat 25 June – Sat 2 July.

Directed by Balisha Karra, one of the Belgrade’s three Co-Artistic Directors for the City of Culture Year, May Queen will see Yasmin Dawes reprise the role of Leigh.

May Day in Coventry, 2022. Sixteen-year-old Leigh has been chosen as May Queen. She’s buzzin’, as is the rest of the city.

The cider is flowing and St George’s flag is flying – but during Cov’s festivities, our Queen is inevitably toppled.

As the year moves on in the City of Peace and Reconciliation, Leigh must face up to the events of that hot May Day, and dig deep within her past and our city’s history to ask – how did she get here? And how does she get out?

Frankie Meredith is a Paines Plough Big Room Fellow, an alumna of the Soho Young Writers Lab 2015, and a graduate of the Lyric Young Writers Programme 2013, whose works include Turkey (The Hope Theatre, 2017), Finding Peter (Theatre N16, 2018), The Olive Trade (Southwark Playhouse, 2016) 17 (longlisted for the Bruntwood Prize 2019), Clementines (2019), Becoming Danish (web series developed through the BBC Writers Room /Ideas Tap, 2020), City Boys (Southwark Playhouse, 2015), The Ballad of Tab and Sal (Old Red Lion, 2015), Monkey (Waterloo East, 2016). Her focuses in her career include championing Midlands based stories & creatives, combating elitism & inaccessibility in theatre.

Balisha Karra said:

I hope for the new iteration of May Queen to continue to shed light on the micro and macro injustices womxn face in society today. I have a desire to heal and know May Queen is a story that many, like I, can relate to. I continue to heal from my own lived injustices and I am choosing to do so by sharing a story I feel I can no longer carry on my own. I hope to direct May Queen from a place of honouring and liberation.”

May Queen is presented by the Belgrade Theatre in co-production with Paines Plough, supported by Coventry City of Culture Trust.


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