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The Pope – Play Reading

The Pope – Play Reading

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  • Sat 21 Sep, 2:00pm – 4:30pm


Circa Theatre, 1 Taranaki St, Wellington


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Adult: $19.00
  • Concession: $15.00


Circa Theatre

Written by: Anthony McCarten.
Directed by: Ross Jolly

Music by Michael Nicholas Williams
Starring: Ken Blackburn, Tim Gordon, Helen Moulder and Bronwyn Turei

Price: $15 - $19

Presented by arrangement with Playmarket.

Runtime: 2hrs 15mins + 15min interval

Featuring a top cast cast of actors - Ken Blackburn, Tim Gordon, Helen Moulder and Bronwyn Turei - and a live musical score from Michael Nicholas Williams

From the Academy Award-nominated screenwriter of The Theory of Everything and Darkest Hour comes the fascinating and revealing tale of an unprecedented transfer of power, and of two very different men - who both happen to live in the Vatican. Soon to be a major Motion Picture starring Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce.

In February 2013, the arch-conservative Pope Benedict XVI made a startling announcement: he would resign, making him the first pope to willingly vacate his office in over 700 years. Reeling from the news, the College of Cardinals rushed to Rome to congregate in the Sistine Chapel to pick his successor. Their unlikely choice? Francis, the first non-European pope in 1,200 years, a one time tango club bouncer, a passionate soccer fan, a man with the common touch.

Why did Benedict walk away at the height of power, knowing his successor might be someone whose views might undo his legacy? How did Francis - who used to ride the bus to work back in his native Buenos Aires - adjust to life as leader to a billion followers? Having immersed himself in these men's lives McCarten weaves their stories into one gripping narrative

Anthony is a celebrated film-maker, novelist and playwright, who divides his time between New Zealand and London. He received early international success with his play Ladies Night. Anthony is also a film director and producer whose screenplay for The Theory of Everything was nominated for an Academy Award. His film Darkest Hour was nominated for the 2018 BAFTA Award for Best British Film.

The Pope is the basis for upcoming film The Two Popes which will screen at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival in September.

Most recently McCarten wrote Bohemian Rhapsody, the Queen biopic that reached Number 1 at the box office in the US, UK, France, Germany, and all major markets, recording the second biggest opening weekend in history for a musical biography.

Circa Theatre has staged a number of Anthony McCarten’s plays include Weed, Yellow Canary Mazurka, Via Satellite as well as a previous Play Reading of Funny Girl.

They are now delighted to present a staged,exclusive reading of this remarkable work from one of New Zealand’s most acclaimed and talented writers… featuring a top cast of actors.

Review Hub gave the play five stars describing it as… A Very Timely and Unmissable Piece of Work.

“McCarten is a novelist and playwright (his screenplay version will soon become a feature film), and he instinctively accentuates the drama and intrigue in this strange but engaging story… McCarten tells the story as clearly as it has ever been told.”

“McCarten’ s dialogue is powerful, surprisingly witty, and holds your attention throughout.” - Anne Cox, StageReview – 4 stars

“A genuinely dramatic experience… McCarten’s enthralling script.” - Michael Davies, Whatsonstage – 4 stars

“A finely tuned tapestry of entertainment. Enthralling, funny.” - A Small Mind at the Theatre, 5 stars

“The play is funny and intimate giving a glimpse into the humanity of men that are normally shrouded n tradition, ritual and politics.” - Karen Johnstone, The Nene Quirer

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