Rosalie Craig and Shaun Evans to Lead MISS JULIE and BLACK COMEDY at Chichester Festival, Begins Today
Rosalie Craig and Shaun Evans lead the cast of Miss Julie / Black Comedy at Chichester, a new production of an acclaimed double bill which celebrates a key moment in this Theatre's history, and its long association with playwright Peter Shaffer.
Black Comedy is an exhilarating farce, which follows impoverished artist Brindsley Miller as he tries to plan the biggest night of his career at his flat, aided and abetted by his fiancée and her father, and other assorted visitors. When the flat is plunged into darkness, events take gloriously unexpected turns.
Peter Shaffer's work is a major thread running through Festival 2014. His association with Chichester dates back to 1964 when The Royal Hunt of the Sun was commissioned by Laurence Olivier, the Theatre's first Artistic Director. This was followed by Black Comedy which was commissioned by legendary dramaturg Kenneth Tynan. Miss Julie and Black Comedy first premiered at Chichester Festival Theatre in 1965 starring Maggie Smith and Albert Finney.
In addition to Black Comedy, Festival 2014 will feature a major new production of Amadeus and rehearsed readings of Shaffer plays, while actors, directors and speakers from the arts will share their experiences of working alongside one of Britain's greatest and most innovative living writers.
Rebecca Lenkiewicz has written a new version of Miss Julie - the powerful exploration of sex, class and power by August Strindberg. The play is set during the tumultuous hours following a Midsummer Night's Eve ball. Miss Julie and her father's handsome valet Jean play provocative and dangerous status games in this masterful exploration of sex, class and power.
Winner of the Critics' Circle Theatre Award for Most Promising Playwright, Lenkiewicz's credits include Her Naked Skin and The Night Season (both staged by the National Theatre).
Rosalie Craig plays the title role in Miss Julie and Clea in Black Comedy. Credits include The Light Princess at the National Theatre, for which she won an Evening Standard Award and was nominated for an Olivier Award, London Road (National Theatre), Ragtime (Regent's Park Open Air Theatre) and Finding Neverland (Curve Theatre, Leicester).
Shaun Evans plays Jean in Miss Julie and Harold Gorringe in Black Comedy. Credits include his role as the young Inspector Morse in ITV's Endeavour, the West End production of Kurt and Sid and Blue/Orange (UK tour). Other screen credits include Wreckers, Silk, The Last Weekend and Teachers.
Jonathan Coy plays Colonel Melkett in Black Comedy. Credits include Privacy (Donmar Warehouse), The Magistrate (National Theatre), the West End production of Much Ado About Nothing and Chichester's A Month in the Country and The Life and Times of Nicholas Nickleby (also West End and Toronto).
Samuel Dutton plays the Farmer in Miss Julie and Bamberger in Black Comedy. Credits include Peter Pan (Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh), Hamlet, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Love's Labour's Lost (all for the RSC).
Mike Grady plays Schuppanzigh in Black Comedy. Credits include TV's The Last of the Summer Wine and Citizen Smith.
Emma Handy plays Kristin in Miss Julie. Her credits include The Boy Who Fell Into A Book (Soho Theatre) and the West End production of Flare Path.
Paul Ready plays Brindsley in Black Comedy. Credits include Wastwater at the Royal Court, London Assurance at the National Theatre and TV drama Utopia.
Marcia Warren plays Miss Furnival in Black Comedy. Credits include the West End production of The Ladykillers, as well as TV's Edge of Heaven and Vicious.
Jamie Glover makes his directorial debut at Chichester, having featured in Festival 2013's If Only. Directing credits include The Dumb Waiter (The Print Room), Single Spies and Educating Rita (both for Watermill Theatre). Acting credits include West End productions of Noises Off and The Invention of Love, All's Well That Ends Well and Edward III (for the RSC).
Design is by Andrew D Edwards. Chichester credits include Theatre on the Fly's 50th anniversary productions, Blue Remembered Hills, Playhouse Creatures and the world premiere of Fred's Diner. Other credits include co-designer for the West End production of Backbeat, Les Parents Terrible (Donmar Warehouse), Lettice and Lovage, Single Spies and Educating Rita (all for Watermill Theatre).
Lighting Design is by James Whiteside whose Chichester credits include A Marvellous Year For Plums, The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist, Wallenstein and Funny Girl. Other credits include The Water Babies (Curve Theatre, Leicester) Bully Boy (St James' Theatre and Northampton Royal) and The Dumb Waiter (The Print Room).
Music is by Simon Allen whose credits include the film Radiator and Resonance at the Still Point of Change, a large scale work commissioned by the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Arts Council England.
Sound Design is by Peter Rice whose credits include Emil and the Detectives and The Kitchen (as Associate Sound Designer for the National Theatre), The Dumb Waiter (The Print Room) and The Masque of Anarchy (Manchester International Festival).
Miss Julie / Black Comedy is at the Minerva Theatre, 4 July - 9 August. Evenings 7.45pm (except for the Press Night, Thursday 10 July, 7.00pm), matinees 2.45pm. Tickets: Previews/Press Night: £18, £22, All other performances £24, £33. To book, go to cft.org.uk or contact the Box Office on 01243 781312. Special Prices for 16 - 25s. An allocation of tickets for 16 - 25 year olds priced at just £8.50 for all performances of Miss Julie / Black Comedy will be released on Friday 6 June. These may be booked on 01243 781312, online at cft.org.uk or in person.
Director Jamie Glover will be in conversation with author and broadcaster Kate Mosse for a pre-show discussion on Friday 11 July at 6pm. Tickets are free, but advance booking is essential via the Box Office.
There will be the chance to meet some of the Miss Julie / Black Comedy company at a post-show discussion on Tuesday 5 August.