HighTide and Paul Jellis in association with The Marlowe and The North Wall present the world premiere of Sam Steiner’s extraordinary new play, Kanye The First. 

“Know what? If you’re a Kanye West fan, you’re not a fan of me – you’re a fan of yourself. “

Annie’s not really a fan of herself. How did she get a life like this? While her perfect sister poses in hipster hats, she has to take care of her sick mother. And she keeps mistaking hot men for her Dad.

There must be more than this. The celebrities that fill her social media feeds are only separated by a screen, but that’s as close as she’ll ever get to someone like Kanye West. People think he’s a God.

But what if everyone thought she was someone else? Someone different. Someone better.

Sam Steiner’s first commissioned play is a dazzlingly funny and original drama about identity, guilt, contemporary culture and the second coming of Kanye West.

Developed through The Marlowe’s Roar programme.

Running time: 1h 40m

Recommended age: 14+ Contains strong language 

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Cast & Creatives

  • Imogen Doel
  • Caroline Faber
  • Daniel Francis-Swaby
  • Keziah Joseph
  • Sam Steiner Writer
  • Andrew Twyman
    Andrew Twyman was Associate Director at HighTide from 2016 - 2018 and an Associate Artist at Live Theatre Newcastle. Andrew will be directed the world premiere of Kanye the First by Sam Steiner at HighTide Festival 2017 For HighTide as Associate Director: Sugar Coated Bullets Of The Bourgeoisie (Arcola Theatre). For HighTide as Assistant Director: Those Who Trespass (The Arts Educational Schools), Forget Me Not (Bush Theatre). Theatre includes:Kanye The First (HighTide), Machinal (The Arts Educational Schools), Odd Shaped Balls (Old Red Lion/Edinburgh Festival/Space UK) Don’t Smoke In Bed (Finborough Theatre); Te Karakia (Vibrant 2015 at Finborough Theatre), ; Reason and Force (King's Head Theatre); Fair Exchange (Tabard Theatre). As Assistant Director: A Further Education (Hampstead Theatre); Berenice (The Space). As Associate Director: King Of The Fuckin' Castle (VAULT Festival). Andrew was also a member of the writing programme at the Live Theatre, Newcastle.  
  • Camilla Clarke Design
  • Jai Morjaria Lighting Design
    Jai was the winner of the 2016 Association of Lighting Designer’s ETC Award and has been nominated for an Off West End Award for Best Lighting Designer in 2016. He trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) specialising in Lighting Design. Previous lighting designs include: A Trip To The Moon (Barbican Concert Hall), No Dogs No Indians (UK Tour), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Southwark Playhouse), Complicite Young Company (Hackney Downs Studio), A Village of Romeo and Juliet Tour (New Sussex Opera Company), Breaking Up Is Hard To do (Upstairs at the Gatehouse), Sister Act The Musical (Alban Arena), Trident Moon (Finborough Theatre), Acorn (Courtyard Theatre), Scrooge and the Seven Dwarves (Theatre 503), Out There on Fried Meat Ridge Road (White Bear Theatre/ Trafalgar Studios 2), The Beggar’s Opera (Jerwood Vanbrugh Theatre), Royal Academy Opera Scenes (Drill Hall Studios), Macbeth (Outdoor - Valley of the Rocks, Exeter). Upcoming Designs include: The Cunning Little Vixen (Arcola Theatre), Alice In Wonderland (Birmingham Old Rep) and The Importance of Being Earnest (Outdoor - Valley of the Rocks, Exeter). www.JaiMorjaria.com
  • Annie May Fletcher Associate Sound Designer
  • Roy Alexander Weise Dramaturg
  • James Baldwin Consultant Dramaturg - The Marlowe
  • Louis Hammond CDG Casting Director
    For HighTide: Harrogate (HighTide Festival) Theatre includes:  The 5 Plays Project (Young Vic); Inkheart (HOME Manchester); The Distance (Sheffield Crucible/Orange Tree Richmond); Romeo and Juliet (Sheffield Crucible); Creditors (Young Vic); The Funfair (HOME Manchester); PrimetimeViolence and Son; Who CaresFireworks (Casting Associate at the Royal Court); Romeo and Juliet (HOME Manchester); Amadeus (Chichester Festival Theatre); The Winter’s Tale (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre); The History Boys (Sheffield Crucible); Driving Miss Daisy (UK Tour); Batman Live (World Arena Tour); The Trial of Dennis The Menace (Southbank Centre); The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (Liverpool Playhouse/Nottingham Playhouse); Blue/Orange (Arcola); Von Ribbentrop’s Watch (UK Tour); Mrs Reynolds and The RuffianBrighton Beach MemoirsAbsent Friends (Watford Palace); All My Sons (Curve, Leicester); 50th Anniversary Season of 50 Rehearsed ReadingsCaryl Churchill SeasonInternational Residencies and new writers’ Rough Cuts presentations (Royal Court); The Member of the WeddingDirty ButterflyThe Indian Wants the Bronx (Young Vic); Loot (Tricycle Theatre); Blowing Whistles (Leicester Square Theatre); Testing the Echo (Tricycle Theatre/Out of Joint Tour); The Importance of Being Earnest (UK Tour/Vaudeville); Donkeys’ Years (UK Tour); Rock’n’Roll (Royal Court/Duke of York’s Theatre); Jus’ Like That (Garrick). Screen includes: Head of Casting at The Bill (Thames TV), and also cast films Arsene LupinNe Quittez PasBeyond Re-Animator; and Mirrormask.
  • Monique Touko Assistant Director
  • Ben Karakashian Production Manager
  • Ben Luke Stage Manager
  • Rike Zoellner Costume Supervisor