A Gala Theatre Durham production in association with York Theatre Royal
By John Godber
Directed by Tom Wright
Designed by Hannah Sibai
York Theatre Royal Studio, 21 May to 1 June
York Theatre Royal goes back to school as John Godber’s comedy Teechers is revived in a Gala Theatre Durham production in the Studio from 21 May to 1 June. Teechers tells the hilarious story of an idealistic new teacher in his perilous first days inside a local comprehensive school.
Three school leavers – Salty, Hobby and Gail – decided to perform an end of term tribute about their times in secondary school. Their play is based on their own drama teacher who ignites their passion for the stage with his idealism and belief.
Teechers brings to life the school bully, feared by teachers and pupils alike; Barry, the kid who never brings his PE kit; and the Headmistress, whose main priority is the annual Gilbert and Sullivan production. The teachers are as ambivalent and mixed-up as the kids, and everyone’s counting down the days until they can get out.
Director Tom Wright and designer Hannah Sibai, who designed The Elves and the Shoemakers in the Studio last Christmas, are reunited after their production of Jim Cartwright’s Two at the Gala last year.
Tom, whose mother was a drama teacher in York before she retired, identifies with the plot. “As I was growing up I got to watch the difference my mum made to young people’s lives. This was a school where the only potential employers who bothered to turn up to careers day were the Armed Forces and fast food chains,” he said.
“The world told these young people again and again that their lives didn’t matter, and there was my mother telling them that they did matter, and opening up a world of imagination and self-expression. Now more than ever before drama and the arts in general are under attack in the state education system. This play is all about that; valuing each student and giving the gift of imagination, in a way which is playful and frequently hilarious.”