The Grey Area has announcd casting for the UK stage première of new British musical Before After by Stuart Matthew Price and Timothy Knapman, following a record-breaking live stream from Southwark Playhouse in 2020. Grey Area’s Artistic Director, Georgie Rankcom, will direct Grace Mouat (Six) and Jacob Fowler (Heathers) in this musical love story about a couple given a second shot at happiness.
The production opens at Southwark Playhouse Borough (Little) on 9 February, with previews from 7 February, and runs until 2 March 2024.
Before After received a UK workshop in the studio space at The Other Palace (previously known as the St. James Theatre), and has had successful productions in Japan and on tour around the Netherlands. This will be the UK première of the show.
Photo: Danny with a Camera
Artistic Director of The Grey Area, Georgie Rankcom, said, “Before After has a strong cult following across the globe – our rehearsed reading streamed during lockdown reached 44 countries, causing #BeforeAfterUK to trend on Twitter, and led to calls for a fully staged version to follow. A long running Japanese translation and a successful tour of the Netherlands have given the writers an opportunity to hone the piece over the last few years. We established The Grey Area to support the growth of new musicals, so I can’t wait to bring this show home to the UK in our new production.”
The Grey Area presents
Music and Lyrics by Stuart Matthew Price
Book and Additional Lyrics by Timothy Knapman
Cast: Jacob Fowler (He/Him) and Grace Mouat (She/Her)
Directed by Georgie Rankcom (She/They); Musical Director: Ben McQuigg (He/Him); Movement Director: Tinovimbanashe Sibanda (She/Her); Set and Costume Designer: Yimei Zhao (She/Her); Lighting Designer: Alex Musgrave (He/Him) Casting Director: Peter Noden (He/Him), Production Stage Manager: Waverley Moran (She/They), Artwork: Jed Berry (He/Him), Photography: Danny Kaan (He/Him)
7 February – 2 March
Ami meets Ben by a tree on a beautiful hillside. She recognises him instantly: they were once very much in love. But Ben doesn’t remember her at all. What went so terribly wrong in the past, and is there a chance that, in the present, these two lovers might just find their happy ever after, after all?
With sweeping romantic music, Before After takes the audience on a hugely emotional journey in the life of a very unusual couple.
Grace Mouat plays Ami. Her theatre credits includeSIX (Arts Theatre and UK tour), & Juliet (Shaftesbury Theatre), Be More Chill (Shaftesbury Theatre), Legally Blonde (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), The Great British Bake Off Musical (Nöel Coward Theatre), and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella (Hope Mill Theatre).
Jacob Fowler plays Ben.His theatre credits include Dreamboats & Petticoats (UK tour), Heathers (The Other Palace – Fowler is also the longest running JD on the UK tour of Heathers), Vanara (Hackney Empire) and In Pieces (Turbine Theatre). He supported Little Mix on their 2022 arena tour after winning the BBC One show Little Mix: The Search.
Stuart Matthew Price is a composer, lyricist and performer. His writing credits include Before After, and also with Knapman, Stuart wrote musical Imaginary (The Other Palace) which was commissioned by the National Youth Music Theatre. Other musical theatre writing credits include The Diary of Me, sci-fi musical Earth 3001 – Piper, and an adaptation of Daphne Du Maurier’s Rebecca. Other projects currently in development include an adaptation of the Netflix documentary Man vs. Snake with Daniel Fletcher, and an adaptation of the best-selling novel Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close with collaborator Victoria Gimby. He is developing a two-part album of original work called Melodies & Motion coming next year. Price is also an actor whose credits include Parade (Donmar Warehouse), The Sound Of Music (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Shrek The Musical (Theatre Royal Drury Lane), and The Rocky Horror Show (European tour).
Timothy Knapman is a lyricist, musical theatre book writer and the author of over 50 children’s books. His musical credits with Stuart Matthew Price include Before After and Imaginary (National Youth Music Theatre). With Laurence Mark Wythe, credits include Midnight (Union Theatre), Danny Hero (Perfect Pitch Musicals/Made in Corby) and Growl: The True Story of the Big Bad Wolf (National Youth Music Theatre). Other theatre writing credits include Gilbert and Sullivan: All at Sixes and Sevens (King’s Head Theatre), The Smallest Person (Trestle Theatre), and The Stag King (Edinburgh). Children’s books include Mungo and the Picture Book Pirates, Dinosaurs in the Supermarket, Follow the Track all the Way Back, Captain Sparklebeard, and the Superhero Dad, Mum and Gran books.
The Artistic Director of The Grey Area Georgie Rankcom directs. Their credits for The Grey Area include How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Help! We Are Still Alive, Anyone Can Whistle, You Are Here, and Before After. Other directing work includes My Sister Is Missing (King’s Head Theatre/The Other Palace), and as Associate Director on The Sex Party (Menier Chocolate Factory).