Jason Durr  Peter Forbes  Jill Halfpenny  Jason Hughes  Sarah Parish

Way Upstream

Emily Laing  Nicola Sloane

Festival Theatre
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Boats are a society in miniature. Everyone has a role, everyone has a function.


'Brilliantly played. Ayckbourn at his best; scenic and technical bravura matched with a script that’s water-tight'

Daily Telegraph

Four old friends, one cruising boat, two weeks off work, and the perfect setting of the beautiful River Orb. What could possibly go wrong?

But even before the ignition key is turned, the outlook is not completely calm. Emma is worried about her onboard safety, captain Keith and his shipmate Alistair have trouble brewing back at their novelty goods business, and sun seeker June is far from happy with the standard of the accommodation.

Waters get even choppier when the troubled crew bump into enigmatic seadog Vince, and his bohemian twitcher friend, Fleur. When they invite Vince on board, to hear tales of his remarkable seafaring adventures, relationships between these mismatched shipmates are about to become decidedly rocky.

Way Upstream will see the Festival Theatre stage transformed into a river, complete with life-size boat, for an hilarious and searing exposé of the murky depths that lie beneath the glittering surfaces of friendship, love, desire and power.

Nadia Fall makes her directorial debut at Chichester having recently directed Dara and Home at the National Theatre, and Hobson’s Choice at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre.

Sarah Parish, well known from many television appearances including leading roles in Cutting It, Mistresses and W1A, makes her Chichester debut as June.

Jason Durr plays Vince. His credits include Donkey's Years (Rose Theatre, Kingston), the West End production of Volcano and the role of PC Mike Bradley in the television series Heartbeat.

Peter Forbes plays Keith. His theatre credits include How to Hold Your Breath (Royal Court Theatre) and The James Plays (National Theatre of Scotland and Edinburgh International Festival).

Jill Halfpenny plays Emma. Her credits include her award-winning performance in Legally Blonde, the West End production of Abigail’s Party and screen roles in Babylon and In The Club.

Jason Hughes plays Alistair. His theatre credits include In The Next Room, or the Vibrator Play (St James Theatre) and the US tour of 4.48 Psychosis. Television credits include the role of DS Ben Jones in Midsomer Murders.

The cast also includes Emily Laing as Fleur, whose credits include Arcadia (Nottingham Playhouse) and Nicola Sloane as Mrs Hatfield whose credits include London Road (National Theatre, and forthcoming film).

Listen to Alan Ayckbourn and Nadia Fall in conversation with Paul Allen.

Cast & Creatives


Cast List

Jason Durr


Peter Forbes


Jill Halfpenny


Jason Hughes


Sarah Parish


Emily Laing


Nicola Sloane

Mrs Hatfield

Creative Team

Cast List

Alan Ayckbourn


Nadia Fall


Ben Stones


Tim Mitchell

Lighting Designer

Fergus O'Hare

Sound Designer


Fight Directors

Gabrielle Dawes

Casting Director



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