Surreal world inspired by dreams

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A new work described by its creator as 'my personal love declaration to surrealism' is featured in the spring season at the New Theatre Royal in Portsmouth.

Masquerade comes from Tilted Productions whose artistic director, Maresa von Stockert, says it is inspired by Freud's interpretation of dreams, the surrealist movement of the mid 20th century and its fascination with the subconscious, eroticism, death and the mystery of time.

Six dancers aged between 25 and 60 will turn bone-structures liquid, and de-construct and re-construct bodies and their secrets, in a production evoking vivid imagery from the beautifully macabre to the violently sensual – inviting audiences into a dream-like world.

NTR director Caroline Sharman says she was 'blown away' by Maresa's previous show and is 'thrilled' that she is returning on February 2.

Physicality will also be to the fore in Trespass by StopGAP Dance, with performers with and without disabilities presenting two new pieces (March 31).

But with contrasting takes on Hamlet, as previously reported in The Guide, the NTR is also promoting a rich range of classic theatre in the new season – featuring both professional and amateur winners from the 2010 Guide Awards.

The Shakespeare's Globe touring company who won the professional trophy with The Comedy Of Errors, return earlier than in previous years with a new open-air production of As You Like It at the City Museum Gardens (May 12-15).

And a member of the CCADS cast whose History Boys at the NTR was named Best Amateur Production will now appear there in The Graduate (February 9-12).

Mike Parker will play opposite Kerry McCrohon, twice a winner of the Best Actress trophy and now returning after having a baby.

Back with the professionals, the venue has three modern takes on old stories.

London Classic Theatre return with After Miss Julie, Patrick Marber's

relocation to modern London of Strindberg's brutal love story (March 9); Troy Boy is an adaptation of La Belle Helene from the Merry Opera Company (March 12); and Blackeyed Theatre will stage Frank McGuinness's version of The Caucasian Chalk Circle (March 15-16).

Away from drama and dance, big names visiting the NTR include poet Roger McGough, jazzman Courtney Pine and comedians Sarah Millican and Shappi Khorsandi.

Details and tickets: (023) 9264 9000 or newtheatreroyal.com