We have now formally linked NIDUS-UK to the forthcoming performance of the play, The Death of King John, first on 19th October at 7.30 pm at the Palace Theatre, Newark (the anniversary of his death in 1216), and the second on 21st October at a 13th century church, All Saints, in Hawton just south of Newark, also at 7.30pm. The play is directed by Steve Cawte and produced by Steve Watson, and has celebrity support and direct involvement from Stephen Fry, Baroness Sheila Hollins, Lord Nicholas Rea, Dame Sue Bailey, Sir Simon Wessely, and Sir David Goldberg. Live music will be performed by the Colin Dudman Ensemble and a Gregorian chant has been created by colleagues at the Grieg Academy of Music Therapy in Bergen, Norway. We are also involving the local churches, schools and other community bodies, in both participating and promoting the play across the town of Newark and the surrounding area, in this production, heightening awareness of the importance of Newark in the 12th century, the influence of Lincoln, the daily lives of the people of Newark, and as many additional historical pieces of information as we can garner. The intention is to publish all these together with the script of the play, and a fuller account of King John’s likely thoughts as he was brought on his sick bed from Swineshead through to Sleaford, and finally to Newark in October, 1216. King John undoubtedly had serious personality problems and these become very clear in the play. As this work will involve every generation living in Newark nobody will be unaware of the importance of this 800th anniversary. All the proceeds from the four performances will go to the mental health charities, NIDUS-UK, Mental Health Foundation, and The Listening Place, a new charity recently set up in London extending the work of the Samaritans.
We also wish to extend the influence of the play in improving understanding of 13th century life in Newark through educational initiatives in local schools. If you are able to come to either of the performances you will learn a great deal more.