Scroll down for all productions from 2003

 

2018

Escaping the Storm

(Marie Stopes on the Isle of Portland)

Written and directed by Peter John Cooper 

Cast; Jane McKell, Eltjo Devries, Phoebe Sharman and Sorcha Martin

Design; Annette Sumption & Sophie Fretwell 

Music; Period archive 

Toured autumn 2018 and spring 2019

The isolated communities of the Isle of Portland on the Dorset coast are shocked to discover the notorious sex campaigner Marie Stopes has bought the Higher Lighthouse.  She hopes it will be her refuge from the storms battering her on the mainland. A collision of cultures is inevitable. How will she change the Islanders’ ways of thinking and how will she be changed by Portland?

Dr Marie Stopes transformed how we think about sex. One of the 20th Century’s most controversial women, her strong views provided graphic understanding of pleasure and consequence of sex. Vilified then by the Catholic Church, Marie Stopes still provokes today. But apart from her work, who was the real Marie Stopes?

Escaping the Storm finds Stopes on Portland; writing, exploring fossil forests, skinny-dipping, and interacting with the locals. Fascinating and formidable – Marie Stopes’ complex private world as controversial as her public one. This first play about Marie Stopes marks 100 years from the publication of Married Love, selected by Melvyn Bragg as one of “12 Books that Changed the World”.

An ensemble of four performers give life to this thought-provoking piece of storytelling by playwright/director Peter John Cooper followed by an optional post-performance Q & A with the AsOne ensemble. 

“Absorbing, informative, captivating and thought provoking” 

“AsOne productions are vibrant and take us to places we haven’t been before –Escaping the Storm was really exceptional – I loved the way the play and cast captured Portland and the unflinching but affectionate warts and all exploration of Marie Stopes” 

2017

Mary Anning Fossil Depot

Written and directed by Peter John Cooper 

Cast: Jane McKell and Eltjo Devries

Design: Annette Sumption 

Music: Grace Hancock

Toured spring 2018

It is said that Mary Anning, born in Lyme Regis in 1799, was  a placid baby; then struck by lightning she became bright and talkative. Not only did little Mary survive, but at 11 years old she & her brother Joseph found the first complete Ichthyosaur fossil. Self-taught, Mary went on to be an inspiration, shaking the 19th Century world of science. ‘Mary Anning Fossil Depot’ is an, entertaining performance, packed-full of interactive fun, facts, & adventure on the Jurassic Coast in Dorset. Mary, aided & abetted by her brother Joseph, looks back at an inspiring life led with a passion for hunting & understanding fossils; struggles with poverty & self-education. This special story is interwoven by a string of ‘Curios’ – small fossils which Mary & Joseph introduce for the children to handle: ‘Snakestones’, ‘Devil’s Toenails’, ‘Ladies Fingers’ – each sold for a penny by the Anning’s to put food on the table. Mary Anning went on to prove with desire and determination, whoever you are, you can achieve great things.

This production toured 26 libraries in the spring of 2018 Dorset, Somerset, and Gloucester which invited Primary schools to walk up to their local library for a performance of live informative theatre at no cost to the schools. The production was supported by Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, West Dorset District Council and Dorset Library Service.

“Entertaining, educational and informative – I could not have enjoyed it more”

“I have been a teacher for 30 years and this is the best schools production I have ever seen”

“I loved the dog – it was a masterclass in observation”

Libraries & Schools Live Tour – Free Theatre for all Children

 

2016/17

The Fisherman’s Daughter

and

Jess’s Odyssey

A double-bill

Written and directed by Peter John Cooper 

Cast: Jane McKell, Bethany Heath

Design: Annette Sumption

Puppet design: Polly Beestone  

Music: Joe Butcher 

Toured spring 2016 /2017

 

As part of AsOne’s ‘Library Live’ ‘The Fisherman’s Daughter’ is the story of a girl waiting for her fisherman father to return from the sea one stormy night. Young Jess faces her fears by dreaming salty tales of ship-wrecks, sea-monsters, treasure and survival. Through a chance meeting with ex-librarian, Moira, and the friendship of a one-legged seagull, called Harold, Jess discovers the magic of books. This professional production  takes 5 – 11 year olds on a journey of maritime imagination and encourage their onward reading in the subject .

Jess discovers the healing magic of books: heartwarming , intimate family theatre with a creative dust of AsOne magic. Commissioned by The Leviathan Weymouth – Maritime Literary Festival 12-13 March 2016 and toured theatres schools and libraries later that year.

Brilliant’, ‘Better than a visit to the doctors’, ‘Harold was hilarious’, ‘Two very talented performers’, ‘A wonderful play, both touching and very funny’ ‘Very striking, stripped-back set.’

‘I’ve heard nothing but wonderful reviews for the Fisherman’s Daughter.

“I loved it, especially the bit where we had to make storm noises, and even grumpy old grandpops loved it”

 

Jess’s Odyssey

Written and directed by Peter John Cooper 

Cast: Jane McKell, Emily Rowan and Ieuan Jeffcott

Design: Annette Sumption 

Music: Joe Butcher 

Toured spring 2017

The Fisherman’s Daughter, Jess now loves reading, and books fill the hours of waiting for her dad. But reading Homer’s Odyssey strange words, names and places confuse her. Frustrated she throws down the book and up pops a stranger who just happens to share the name of the writer. Homer is a Greek boy from a trawler moored in the harbour.  He tells Jess that a woman, Moira, has been kidnapped and held below decks.  Jess is in disbelief until he produces a bedraggled Harold, the one legged seagull.  They revive Harold, and all three set off on their own odyssey to rescue Moira.


2015

Tinderbox

A captivating twist on an original tale’

Written and Directed by Jacqueline Avery

Co Director:  Peter John Cooper 

Cast: Jessica Chloe Young, Laurence Aldridge, John Hatiemmanuel & Jane McKell,

Design; Jacqueline Avery & Sam Lovett

Animation: Thomas Hughes 

Music: Joe Butcher 

Toured autumn 2015

Tinderbox– This new play gives a classic Hans Christian Andersen tale an illuminating Jurassic Coast twist, and AsOne AsCend ensemble add heart and soul dusted with humour. A war-torn soldier and an obstinate princess – aided by three unearthly dogs, a strange and wizened woman with a magic tinderbox – discover the unbreakable bonds of true love. ‘tinderbox’ is an audio-visual treat to thrill all the family. Powerful physical storytelling; puppetry; shadow play and animated imagery – accompanied by live, original music and song – combine to create a spell-binding experience whatever your age.

“AsOne ensemble is puts the magic back into family theatre”

“Spellbinding – a very talented cast”

“I loved the music – I can’t get it out of my head”

 

 2014

PASSION

 Line of Departure

True Stories of War and Love  100 Years Apart 1914-2014

Written by Stephanie Dale 

Directed by Peter Leslie Wild 

Cast: Tim Laycock, Jane McKell, Steve Rollins and Ieuan Jeffcott

Stage Manager: Marina Kilby 

ASM: Georgina Riley

Design: Annette Sumption

Music: Tim Laycock and period archive 

Toured autumn 2014

PASSION – A gripping new piece of theatre with live music – five incredible stories of families affected by war. The play has been created using real testimony from people:  who’ve fought in Afghanistan; who’ve waved their child off to fight; who’ve discovered a WW1 relative’s diary. Intertwined  with extensive research and dusted with talent this is affecting theatre at its best.

AsOne Theatre Company’s project 2014/15 ‘PASSION’ has live music, song and film and  timed for the anniversary of the start of WW1 and the planned final exit of UK troops from Afghanistan. Funding in place from Arts Council England, The Heritage Lottery Fund, West Dorset District Council. It was premiered at The Corn Exchange, Dorchester and toured from Wednesday 8 October 2014  – throughout wider Wessex and into Gloucester, London, Bath and Bristol – until our finale in Weymouth in November 2014.

“Intertwining stories from the First World War and the Afghan War, Passion integrates genuine memories, original live music and song to create a poignant, sometimes funny, vivid and surprising take on the effect of war on combatants and families alike.”

 

2013

100

Written by Diene Petterle, Neil Monaghan, and Christopher Heimann

Directed by Jacqueline Avery and Peter John Cooper 

Cast: Maya Aitken, Ellis J Wells, Mainga Mayeya Jane McKell and Jacqueline Avery

Design: Jacqueline Avery 

Animation: Thomas Hughes 

Music: Simon Swarbrick

Toured autumn 2013

Award winning AsOne Theatre Company presented it new venture in 2013:  AsCend Physical Theatre which chose Diene Petterle, Neil Monaghan, and Christopher Heimann’s thought provoking ‘100’ as its first touring production. Imagine you had to choose just one memory to take into eternity, and that you would re-live that treasured memory afresh, experiencing it as for the first time over and over and over. That is what four characters are urged  to do by a mysterious other – to a count of ‘100’! This singular decision turns out to be far more difficult than any can imagine. It challenges the way each have lived, loved, observed, and even valued life itself; there are implications none would have guessed. What memory would you choose?

“.. It is a tiny, huge, simple, complex play that touched me in places I didn’t even know I had. (…) This play moved me more profoundly than anything I can remember seeing in theatre..’  The Scotsman.

2012

The Cabinet Makers Daughter

Written and directed by Peter John Cooper 

Cast; Jane McKell, Rebecca Legrand, Alan Barnes and Mark Freestone

Design: Annette Sumption 

Music: Roderick Skeaping & Holly Cooper 

Toured spring & Autumn 2012

The Cabinet Maker’s Daughter  is a much acclaimed original production. “compelling and powerful – brilliant acting”

This new play by Peter J Cooper portrays the life and final moments of the renowned 19th Century fossil hunter from Dorset – Mary Anning. It completed its 21 date tour on 16 November at the Bridport Arts Centre. The final three theatres played to capacity houses and overall represented one of the best audience take ups and responses to any of our productions to date.

2010/11

She Opened The Door

Written and directed by Peter John Cooper 

Cast; Jane McKell, Trisha Lewis, Dani Bright,& Mary Lou Delplanque

Design: Annette Sumption 

Music: Roderick Skeaping 

Toured autumn 2010 & spring 2011

She Opened the Door! is an original play by Peter John Cooper based around the women in the life of Thomas Hardy and how they may have influenced the characters in his books – the wife, the mother and the other woman.

It successfully toured 15 theatres, starting at the 2010 International Thomas Hardy Festival in the Corn Exchange Dorchester and culminating in a reprise performance in the garden of Hardy’s Home Max Gate – where the play was set.

“Sure to become a theatrical treasure of the future” – Dorset Echo.

A book of the play is now available on Amazon by Roving Press.

2009

Hey Baby

Written by Nell Denton

Directed by Peter John Cooper 

Cast; Katie Don Hughes, Robert Dobson, Jane McKell and Mark Freestone

Design: Annette Sumption 

Music: Simon Swarbrick

Toured spring and autumn 2009

Hey Baby! is a magical piece of story telling in the hands of playwright Nell Denton which has the unmistakable ring of truth. Based on real stories from five very different Portland couples as they journey into parenthood. Evoking a truly unique but universal experience, the play, directed by Peter Cooper, toured five counties during the Spring and Autumn 2009 .[/toggle]

2007/8

Lets Do It

Written by Jamie Chapman & Johanna Lawrence

Directed by Laura Mulhern

Cast; Annette Woolven, Jane McKell and Mark Duncan

Stage Manager: Graham Budd

Design: Annette Sumption 

Music: Ken Allen & period archive

Toured spring and autumn 2009

Lets Do It! -yet another new piece of theatre – AsOne Theatre devised magical mix of memories, music and projected image, Lets Do It! sparkled with much-loved songs and anecdotes from the brilliant minds of Noel Coward and Cole Porter, evoking five decades.

Evergreen Noel Coward and Cole Porter remain two of the wittiest and intelligent of 20th century composers and lyricists of revue/musical theatre. Their stories and music is inter-linked by photographs and film evoking contrasting times of gaiety and depression.

2005

A String of Pearls

Devised by Jane McKell

Directed by Jamie Chapman 

Cast; Annette Woolven, Jane McKell and Giselle Summers

Design: The Cast 

Music: Ken Allen & period archive 

Toured spring and summer 2005

A String of Pearls is an evocative human drama with music as a beating heart, a celebration of World War II through the eyes of women; the second in a series of two productions, this time commemorating and celebrating VE Day.

This production toured from the end of April until late June 2005 in Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire. It is an original project, the culmination of 18 month’s research and collation by As One Productions using more than 200 original WWII memories – sent from all over the UK – the stimulus for a story of three sisters with very different lives and goals. The sisters go on a journey of discovery whilst packing up their deceased Grandma’s possessions. What they learn about themselves is more than matched by what they learn about Grandma.

A thrilling string of stories about all kinds of women; the trailblazers, the homemakers, the brave, the frightened, the young innocents and the worldly-wise with one common denominator; an indomitable spirit… and Grandma certainly has the last word. This production sees the very experienced, singer/actress Giselle Summers joining as performer/joint musical director/vocal arranger.

2004

In The Mood

Devised by Jane McKell & Lorraine Rowan

Directed by Jane McKell 

Cast; Annette Woolven, Jane McKell and Lorraine Rowan

Design: The Cast 

Music: Ken Allen & period archive

Toured spring and summer 2004

In the Mood was a multi-media tribute to D Day featuring Glenn Miller, Andrew’s Sisters, Vera Lynn and Judy Garland, linked by living memories from survivors of turbulent days. Devised by As One out of an original idea from Artistic Director, Jane McKell, In the Mood – with its rich three part harmonies, nostalgia and gritty story telling – has proved a big hit; touring until November 04, a springboard to As One’s new Spring 05 show. The company was joined by choreographer/performer, Antoinette Woolven.

2003

Circle of Life

Devised by Jane McKell & Lorraine Rowan

Directed by Lorraine Rowan 

Cast: Jane McKell and Lorraine Rowan

Design: The Cast 

Music: Ken Allen & period archive

Toured spring and summer 2003

Circle of Life a wry look at life in word, picture and song. Lorraine Rowan was performer/joint musical director.

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