The brand new Brixton House theatre is set to open on 24 February 2022.
Formerly the Ovalhouse Theatre in Kennington, South London, the brand new venue is now based on Coldharbour Lane in Brixton, South London, designed by architects Foster Wilson Size.
Led by new Artistic Directorship Gbolahan Obisesan, the new season includes Mugabe, My Dad and Me, produced by English Touring Theatre, Brixton House & York Theatre Royal in association with Alison Holder. Written and performed by Tonderai Munyevu, the show charts the rise and fall of Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe, one of the most controversial politicians of the 20th century, through the personal story of Tonderai’s family and his relationship with his father. Mugabe, My Dad and Me runs from 24 February to 1 April.
Also premiering on 24 February for two nights is Butterflies, an uplifting tale of friendship, courage and facing your fears, told using innovative staging, breathtaking physicality, touching humour and an original musical score, for children 3+. The show is produced by award-winning theatre ensemble Tangled Feet and leading theatre company for young people, Half Moon.
Brixton House will also showcase a season called Swiss Selection Live from 8 to 12 March 2022, as Pro Helvetia brings some of Switzerland’s most dynamic artists to Brixton House, including Alan Alpenfelt retracing the journey of British photographer William England’s 1863 Grand Tour of Switzerland through stereoscopic photographs and binaural sound; plus performances from Ntando Cele and Trân Tran.
The Body Remembers from 16 to 26 March 2022 is created and performed by Heather Agyepong and produced by Fuel. The show explores how trauma lives in the body, particularly for Black British women across different generations. Kabul Goes Pop: Music Television Afghanistan premieres at Ovalhouse from 11 to 29 May and is a debut by actor/writer Waleed Akhtar, inspired by a true story of Afghanistan’s first youth music TV programme, produced by Brixton House with HighTide in association with the Mercury Theatre Colchester. Also in the first season is Fathers from 5 to 17 July 2022, created by Elise Chatauret and Thomas Pondevie based on interviews with French households from diverse immigrant backgrounds to reveal what roles and influence fathers have today.
Brixton House Artistic Director Gbolahan Obisesan told the press: “Brixton House will be a vital cultural beacon in Brixton and a home of creativity and expression for everyone. We want to attract, support, and inspire new artistic experiences that will develop our community solidarity and passion for social change in society. With this opening season, we focus on our Family Ties, because ours is a home where we acknowledge we are all connected and bound by our love of art and artists, propelled by our spirit of togetherness, whilst giving space to showcasing our creative bond and appreciation of human experiences.”
Brixton House joins a number of new theatre venues to open in London in 2022. The original Ovalhouse theatre closed at the end of 2019 after 50 years, and this new building has two performance spaces – a main theatre seating up to 200 and a smaller venue up to 120, plus seven rehearsal studios, and a cafe/bar.