Cast Announced for Alan Harris’ Sugar Baby at Alphabetti Theatre

Posted on September 20th 2022 by Whats on Northeast

Sugar Baby was first produced by Dirty Protest as part of Wales in Edinburgh with the support of Chapter, the Arts Council of Wales, Wales Arts International and British Council Wales. The show premiered at Paines Plough’s Roundabout at Summerhall in Edinburgh Fringe in 2017 and
transferred to Soho Theatre in 2018. This will mark the North East premiere of this one-man show that lets audiences into Marc’s world. Marc spends his time avoiding his mum, disguising his cannabis plants with fake tomatoes, and bailing out his old man, who owes £6,000 to local
loan shark Oggy. When Marc meets Lisa for the first time in years, things get even messier because Lisa wants Marc and Oggy wants Lisa. Marc just wants to survive the day. Marc will be played by Newcastle Theatre Royal Project A graduate Ben Gettins who recently starred in Down the Lines at The Customs House in South Shields as part of their Takeover Young Writer in Residence.

Sugar Baby is directed by Natasha Haws, a director from South Shields. She also works with communities across the North East with a focus on music and creative writing and mentors new career playwrights. Her credits as a director include Mr Incredible (Alphabetti Theatre), Janet (Circ Motif), Is This Your Story (North East Tour/STSGB), and assistant director of West End Girls (Live Theatre) and ROAD (Northern Stage).
Ben Gettins comments, When reading the audition material, I instantly felt like this production was something I wanted to be a part of. The comedic but very relevant capers, which this play entails, reflects the antics of certain working-class people trying to get by.

Everyone will know one of these characters. I feel like I grew up around them; this made me feel like it was something I’d be very proud to represent. Natasha Haws comments, Sugar Baby has been on my ‘please can I direct this’ list since the day I read it. It’s warm, weird, and hilarious. And quite frankly unlike anything I’ve directed before. Although I’m not Welsh, I recognise Fairwater in my home town of Shields and it’s characters. It would be very easy to fall into stereotypes, but Marc is human, unpolished and has a real love for the people around him. Oh and Billy the seal, obviously.


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