IT is billed as the greatest Victorian comedy ever written and now the perfect setting has been found to stage it in.

Oscar Wilde's charmingly witty The Importance of Being Earnest will open at the Albert Halls in Bolton with Suba Das in the director's chair.

The new artistic director of HighTide, will direct the sensational and lavish tale of witty comedy which will open in June, for the Octagon Theatre.

Suba said: "What a thrill to tackle this enduring classic, and an honour to do so for Lotte’s first season in Bolton as the theatre goes off-site.

"The gorgeous environment of the Albert Halls feels custom-made for the greatest Victorian comedy written. While we’ll be wholeheartedly embracing all of the ornate trappings of the period with our production, Wilde’s savage wit is as timely today as it was 120 years ago, taking laugh-out-loud potshots at everything from class snobbery to sexism.

"After taking on Abigail’s Party in Leicester, and East is East in Newcastle and Nottingham, I’m now looking forward to creating some more excruciatingly hilarious moments on stage for audiences in Bolton. A great night out guaranteed."

Newcastle born Cambridge graduate Suba Das began his career in theatre as resident assistant director at Theatre Royal Stratford East and in 2008 he became resident director of the National Theatre Studio. Suba co-founded theatre company Custom/Practice in 2010, staging critically acclaimed site-specific reimaginings of Othello and The Winter’s Tale.

In 2012, Suba became Leicester Curve’s Associate Director and has directed plays there including Pink Sari Revolution and The Cat in The Hat ­— currently on tour ­— and oversees the development of new work by artists from across the East Midlands.

He has also directed for theatres across the UK including Northern Stage, Nottingham Playhouse, the Young Vic and the Roundhouse. Last year, Suba was appointed Artistic Director of HighTide in Suffolk, a theatre company producing annual festivals that champion new writing.

Lotte Wakeham, artistic director at the Octagon said: "I’m absolutely delighted to have Suba on board to direct The Importance of Being Earnest, one of my all time favourite comedies.

"Suba is a rising star ­— e’s just been appointed as Artistic Director of the prestigious HighTide Theatre company ­— and is an incredibly witty, gifted director, who I think will be a perfect fit for Oscar Wilde’s writing.

"I’m confident that Bolton audiences are going to be in for a real treat with this brand new, thoroughly entertaining production. With Suba on board alongside a talented design team, I’m sure it will make for an unforgettable and hilarious evening in the beautiful Albert Halls."

The Octagon Theatre building is undergoing a transformation and will reopen early in 2020.

The Importance of Being Earnest will run from Thursday, June 6 until Saturday, June 15 at the Albert Halls Bolton.

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