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April 28, 2011 by  
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Thrill Me: The Leopold and Loeb Story Transfers

April 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Theatre Press Releases

Following a sell-out UK premiere, Stephen Dolginoff’s multi-award winning musical, Thrill Me, transfers to the Charing Cross Theatre next month.

Based on the shocking true story of infamous thrill killers Leopold & Loeb: Chicago, 1924. Two wealthy college kids and a contract signed in blood. One is obsessed with crime, the other with love. Thrill Me: The Leopold & Loeb Story dramatises the series of events that led law students Leopold and Loeb to be forever remembered as ‘the thrill killers’. The show focuses on their obsessive relationship, which exploded into violence, and utilises Leopold’s 1958 parole hearing as a framework.

The case attracted global attention at the time due to the nature of their crimes and the duo being young, well educated and wealthy. They narrowly escaped the death penalty thanks to the arguments of lawyer, Clarence Darrow. The true events were also the basis for Never the Sinner, Compulsion, Swoon and were the inspiration for Patrick Hamilton’s Rope later made into the famous film thriller by Alfred Hitchcock.

The cast is George Maguire as Richard Loeb and Jye Frasca as Nathan Leopold. Frasca was the original Joe Pesci in Jersey Boys and regularly played Frankie Valli in the show (West End). His other credits include: Wicked, Mary Poppins (both West End) and Trevor Nunn’s Love’s Labour’s Lost and Anything Goes (National Theatre). George Maguire’s West End credits include Oliver and Fame.

Dolginoff’s Thrill Me won an ASCAP Music Award (New York 2005) and was nominated for the Drama Desk Award for Best Musical and Best Music Score and for an Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Off-Broadway Musical. The show has since been produced elsewhere in America and around the world.

Director Guy Retallack’s work for the stage includes The Secret Rapture (Lyric); Drowning On Dry Land (Jermyn Street Theatre); Liberty (Shakespeare’s Globe and National Tour); Faster (Filter Theatre at the Lyric Hammersmith and 59E59 Street Theater New York) and Future Me (London season and two national tours). Musical Direction by David Keefe, design by James Turner, lighting by Richard Williamson. Voice-overs by Les Dennis, Patricia Quinn and Lee Mead.

Press response from the UK Premiere of this production at the Tristan Bates Theatre included:
‘There is no production currently running in the capital that is more intelligent,
atmospheric and haunting than this.’ Sunday Telegraph *****
‘Thrill Me is thrilling indeed.’ The Evening Standard ****
‘Sharp and witty, full of strong songs and clever twists.’ Whatsonstage.com ****

Release issued by: Kate Gambrell

LINKS

Thrill Me website

PAUL MCGANN in Butley

Paul McGann stars alongside Dominic West in Butley at the Duchess Theatre

PAUL MCGANN in Butley

Paul McGann joins the cast of Simon Gray’s classic comedy Butley this summer at the Duchess Theatre, playing Reg Nuttall. He is joined by Dominic West, Penny Downie and Amanda Drew.

Paul McGann’s first major role was as Percy Topliss in the BBC series The Monocled Mutineer. He is best known for his role in Withnail and I and as the eighth Doctor in Doctor Who, and recently appeared as Mark North in the TV series Luther.

Paul’s long career in theatre includes work at the Nottingham Playhouse, Royal Court and Liverpool Playhouse, with recent performances including Helen at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and Mourning Becomes Electra at the National Theatre.

Book tickets to see Butley at the Duchess Theatre

Full Cast Announced For Butley: Paul Mcgann, Penny Downie And Amanda Drew Join Dominic West

April 27, 2011 by  
Filed under Theatre Press Releases

The full cast has been announced for this summer’s West End revival of Simon Gray’s comedy Butley. Alongside Dominic West, star of hit US drama The Wire, who will play the iconic title role of the rapier-tongued lecturer Butley, will be Paul McGann (Withnail and I, Doctor Who), Penny Downie, (RSC’s Hamlet, Invictus) and Amanda Drew (ENRON, Eastenders).

Ben Butley is having a monumentally bad day. So bad, he’s making sure everyone else has a worse one. His estranged wife has taken up with the most boring man in London. His beloved protégé has found a new benefactor. And in an unprecedented act of betrayal even the English department’s resident failure has a book deal. Butley’s trusty arsenal – mischievous irony and gleeful troublemaking – have never failed him yet. Might they finally prove to be the weapons of his own tragic self-destruction?

Butley premiered in 1971 in Harold Pinter’s award-winning production starring Alan Bates at London’s Criterion Theatre. Forty years on, West takes the lead in this razor sharp and darkly comic assault on the soft underbelly of academia.

Full cast: Dominic West, Paul McGann, Penny Downie, Amanda Drew, Martin Hutson, Cai Brigden, Emma Hiddleston

The production will be directed by Lindsay Posner, designed by Peter McKintosh, with lighting designed by Howard Harrison.

Dominic West played the character of Jimmy McNulty in five seasons of The Wire (HBO) from 2002 to 2008. His other screen credits include The Devil’s Whore, Centurion and 300. His theatre credits include The Seagull (Old Vic), As You Like It (West End), The Voysey Inheritance (National), Rock ‘n’ Roll (West End) and Life Is A Dream (Donmar).

Paul McGann will play Reg Nuttall. His first major role was as Percy Topliss in the BBC series The Monocled Mutineer. Best known for his role in Withnail and I and as the eighth Doctor in Doctor Who, Paul’s theatre work includes Helen (Globe Theatre) and Mourning Becomes Electra (National Theatre). Paul also recently appeared as Mark North in the TV series Luther.

Penny Downie will play Edna Shaft. Her recent stage roles include Gertrude in Hamlet and Penelope in The Penelopiad (both for the RSC) and Dinner (National Theatre/West End).

Amanda Drew will play Anne Butley. Amanda played the role of Beth in the recent West End revival of Simon Gray’s Otherwise Engaged. Other recent stage appearances include House of Games (Almeida), ENRON (Chichester/Royal Court/West End), Parlour Song (Almeida) and The Ugly One (Royal Court). She also played the regular character of Dr May Wright in Eastenders (BBC TV), and won the Evening Standard Award for Best Newcomer for her role in Eastward Ho! (RSC) in 2002.

Martin Hutson will play Joseph Keyston. His stage credits include Anthony and Cleopatra (Liverpool Playhouse), Taking Sides / Collaboration (Chichester/West End), The Voysey Inheritance (NT), The Comedy of Errors (Sheffield) and As You Like It (RSC). He was nominated in 2001 for the Ian Charleson Award for his roles in Ghosts (West End) and As You Like It (Sheffield)

Lindsay Posner’s credits include An Ideal Husband, A View From The Bridge (both West End), Fiddler on the Roof (Sheffield Crucible and West End), Fool for Love, Oleanna (both West End) and Death and the Maiden (Royal Court/West End).

Press night will be held on Monday 6th June 2011 at 7pm.

Press release issued by: The Corner Shop

LINKS

Book tickets to Butley at the Duchess Theatre in London

DOMINIC WEST in Butley

The Wire’s Dominc West to star in Butley at the Duchess Theatre

DOMINIC WEST in Butley

Dominic West. Photo: perou

Dominic West will return to the London stage this summer to take on one of Simon Gray’s great comedy characters. Lindsay Posner’s new production of Butley at the Duchess Theatre will see West play the rapier-tongued lecturer Butley alongside Paul McGann, Penny Downie and Amanda Drew.

Dominic West played the character of Jimmy McNulty in five seasons of The Wire (HBO) from 2002 to 2008. His other screen credits include The Devil’s Whore, Centurion and 300.

Dominic’s stage credits include The Seagull at the Old Vic, The Voysey Inheritance at the National Theatre, Life Is A Dream at the Donmar Warehouse and Rock ‘n’ Roll and As You Like It in the West End.

Book tickets to see Dominic West in Butley at the Duchess Theatre

West End transfer for Singin’ in the Rain?

April 27, 2011 by  
Filed under Stage Spy

A heavy-weight cast has been announced for the Chichester Festival Theatre’s new production of Singin’ in the Rain.

Jonathan Church is directing the classic MGM musical with a cast that includes Adam Cooper (Guys and Dolls), Daniel Crossley (Hello, Dolly!), Scarlett Strallen (Passion), Michael Brandon (Jerry Springer The Opera), Sandra Dickinson (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) and Katherine Kingsley (Aspects of Love).

Given the quality of the cast and the buzz surrounding the show, our transfer-o-meter has been running wild on rumours that the show may get a West End run.

The show runs at Chichester from 27 June  to 10 September.

LINKS

Chichester Festival Theatre website

More news on Singin’ in the Rain

RUMOUR CHECK-LIST

  • Show: Singin’ in the Rain
  • Director: Jonathan Church
  • Premiere: Chichester
  • Casting: Adam Cooper, Daniel Crossley and Scarlett Strallen
  • London Dates: ?

Singin in the Rain

Singin’ in the Rain casting confirmed

April 27, 2011 by  
Filed under Theatre Press Releases

Michael Brandon, Sandra Dickinson and Katherine Kingsley have been confirmed to appear in the musical Singin’ in the Rain at Chichester Festival Theatre, alongside Adam Cooper, Daniel Crossley and Scarlett Strallen.

Michael Brandon will play film boss R. F Simpson. Brandon originated the title role of the infamous talk show host in Jerry Springer -The Opera at the National Theatre and in the West End, for which he received an Olivier Award nomination. His other theatre credits include Wet Weather Cover, On the Waterfront and Speed the Plow. On screen he is perhaps best known as police detective Lieutenant James Dempsey in the popular 1980s ITV crime drama Dempsey and Makepeace. Other screen credits include a recent episode of BBC 1’s Hustle, The Last Days of Lehman Brothers and a forthcoming mini-series This September by Rosamund Pilcher.

Sandra Dickinson will play Dora, a radio show host, and Miss Dinsmore, a diction coach. Dickinson’s credits include the BBC television series’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and 2 Point 4 Children, as well as the films Space Truckers, Supergirl and Superman III.

Katherine Kingsley will play Lina Lamont, a shrill-voiced leading lady. Kingsley’s credits include Hobson’s Choice at Chichester (Festival 2007), The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Donmar Warehouse), the roles of Marlene Dietrich and Madeleine in Piaf (Donmar Warehouse and the West End), for which she received an Olivier Award nomination, Rose in Aspects of Love (Menier Chocolate Factory), The 39 Steps (UK tour) and High Society (West End and UK tour).

The Singin’ in the Rain cast also features Adam Cooper, whose credits include On Your Toes and Guys and Dolls, as silent movies star Don Lockwood, Daniel Crossley, whose credits include Hello, Dolly!, Chicago, Fosse and Mary Poppins, as Cosmo Brown, and Scarlett Strallen, who has appeared in The Music Man (Festival 08), Mary Poppins and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, as Kathy Selden.

Singin’ in the Rain is at Chichester Festival Theatre from 27 June – 10 September, 7.30pm, (except Press Night, Tuesday 5 July at 7pm), matinees 2.15pm.

Release issued by: Chichester Festival Theatre

LINKS

Chichester Festival Theatre website

GRETA SCACCHI in Bette & Joan

April 27, 2011 by  
Filed under Cast - Archive, Star Watch Archive

Greta Scacchi stars as Bette Davis in Bette & Joan at the Arts Theatre in London

GRETA SCACCHI in Bette & JoanGreta Scacchi will star in the world premiere of a new play this spring, based on the long-running feud between Hollywood movie stars Bette Davis and Joan Crawford.

Bette & Joan by Anton Burge will star Anita Dobson and Greta Scacchi as the famous movie icons, at the Arts Theatre from 5 May to 25 June 2011. The show will be directed by Bill Alexander.

Greta Scacchi grew up in Italy, England and Australia. Her stage credits include Michael Blakemore’s West End production of Uncle Vanya alongside Jonathon Pryce and Michael Gambon, which became the movie Country Life, and the Peter Hall directed production of Bath Theatre Royal’s Private Lives.

Film work includes Heat and Dust, The Ebony Tower, White Mischief and The Player. In 1996 she was nominated for a Golden Globe for Rasputin and she was also nominated for an Emmy Award for Best Supporting Actress for Broken Trail in 2007.

Book tickets to Bette & Joan at the Arts Theatre in London

ANITA DOBSON in Bette & Joan

Anita Dobson stars as Joan Crawford in Bette & Joan at the Arts Theatre in London

ANITA DOBSON in Bette & Joan

Photo: © Roy Tan

This spring Anita Dobson will star in the world premiere of a new play based on the long-running feud between Hollywood movie stars Bette Davis and Joan Crawford.

Bette & Joan by Anton Burge will star Anita Dobson and Greta Scacchi as the famous movie icons, at the Arts Theatre from 5 May to 25 June 2011. The show will be directed by Bill Alexander.

Anita Dobson’s theatre credits include the title role in the UK tour of Hello Dolly and her 2004 Whatsonstage award-winning performance in Thoroughly Modern Millie at the Shaftesbury Theatre. Also Budgie, with Adam Faith, Tom Stoppard’s Rough Crossing, My Lovely Shayna Maidel and Gertrude in the English Touring Theatre production of Hamlet. She was last seen on stage in Tim Firth’s West End production of Calendar Girls.

On TV her best known role is as Angie in BBC serial drama EastEnders. Other credits include Red Dwarf, Rab C Nesbitt, Split Ends, Dangerfield, Sunburn, Casualty, Holby City, Hotel Babylon, The Last Detective, The Stretch, Urban Gothic and The Bill. Film work includes Sweet Revenge.

Book tickets to Bette & Joan at the Arts Theatre in London

SAMUEL BARNETT in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead

Samuel Barnett to star in Trevor Nunn’s production of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead at the Theatre Royal Haymarket

SAMUEL BARNETT in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are DeadSamuel Barnett will reunite with his fellow History Boys co-star Jamie Parker this summer to star as Rosencrantz in Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead.

Samuel was last on stage in 2010 as Leantio in Women Beware Women at the National Theatre. He played Posner in Alan Bennett’s The History Boys at the National Theatre, on Broadway, on film and on the radio.

His other theatre credits include His Dark Materials for the National Theatre, The Whisky Taster and When You Cure Me for the Bush Theatre, Dealers Choice for the Menier Chocolate Factory, The Marriage of Figaro for the Royal Exchange Theatre, Accrington Pals for Chichester Festival Theatre and Frankenstein for the Open Air Theatre Regents Park.

His TV credits include Two Pints of Larger and a Packet of Crisps, Miss Marple, Beautiful People, Desperate Romantics, Crooked House, John Adams and the title role in Wilfred Owen: A Tale of Remembrance. His other film credits include Bright Star, Mrs Henderson Presents and Love tomorrow.

Samuel Barnett stars alongside Jamie Parker (Guildenstern) and Tim Curry (The Player) in Trevor Nunn’s new production of Tom Stoppard’s classic comedy.

Book tickets to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in London

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