Royal Court Theatre announces London transfer of Dirty Hare's award-winning Gunter

Published on Thu 25 Jan 2024

The Royal Court Theatre has today announced the transfer of Dirty Hare’s award-winning production of Gunter, co-created by Lydia Higman, Julia Grogan and Rachel Lemon

Gunter will run in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from Wednesday 3 to Thursday 25 April 2024, with a press night on Friday 5 April 2024. Tickets will go on sale to the general public at 10am on Friday 26 January 2024. 

This follows its sold-out premiere at Summerhall at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2023. For its Fringe run, Gunter was awarded the Scotsman Fringe First Award 2023, Playbill’s Pick of the Fringe, Lyn Gardner’s Pick of the Fringe and Dirty Hare were named one of The Stage’s Top Breakthrough Theatre Makers. 

In a small village just outside Oxford in 1604, Anne Gunter starts convulsing, vomiting pins, and accusing local women of bewitching her.

Two boys have been murdered by local brute Brian Gunter at a football match and their mum wants justice. But Brian is the richest and most powerful man in the village, and has an ego too fragile to tolerate public slander. A nasty feud begins, and when Brian’s daughter Anne starts demonstrating strange afflictions, an allegation is made: she has been bewitched.

Lydia Higman, Julia Grogan and Rachel Lemon, who make up Dirty Hare, work with history, reconstructing stories from the past to challenge the present. Dirty Hare formed in 2021 and made the sell-out show BELLY UP, which opened to critical acclaim at VAULT and then transferred to the Turbine Theatre in 2022. Gunter is the company’s next show. Directed by Lemon with live music composed by Higman, Gunter presents a harrowing, real-life tale of abuse and fear set in the idyll of a country scarred by witch trials. The original cast returns: Julia Grogan, Norah Lopez Holden, Hannah Jarrett-Scott and Lydia Higman.

The creative team is completed by design by Anna Orton, lighting by Amy Daniels, video/projection by Michelle Alise, music and lyrics by Lydia Higman, Tom Alford as sound consultant and Anisha Fields as design associate. Lydia Higman is also the historian on the production. 

Dirty Hare said, “We are unbelievably excited to be bringing Gunter to the Royal Court – to be part of a building with such a rich history which is also on the brink of an exciting future is so cool. Also to share this story with bigger audiences will be amazing! We’re also working on a redesign with the incredible Anna Orton, so we’re hoping to bring a new and more ambitious energy to the show for London. We can’t wait!” 

Gunter opens at the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from Wednesday 3 April. The Royal Court Theatre’s 2024 Season, the inaugural programme under new Artistic Director David Byrne, will be announced later this Spring.


See here for the full press release.

Cover image credit: Alex Brenner.