Tony Robinson to Star in Royal Opera House's THE WIND IN THE WILLOWS, Dec 11

Tony Robinson will star as Kenneth Grahame, who narrates the Royal Opera House's production of The Wind in the Willows, in the ROH's first commercial transfer to London's West End. This well-loved story is brought to life through song, music, dance and puppetry. The production, directed and choreographed by Will Tuckett, will run at the Duchess Theatre from Wednesday 11 December 2013 - Saturday 1 February 2014

Tony has enjoyed a long career in television, having presented twenty seasons of Channel 4's archaeology series Time Team and played Baldrick in Blackadder amongst many other credits. He is an award-winning children's television writer and the author of more than thirty children's books. The Wind in the Willows sees Tony return to the stage for the first time since 1997. He has previously appeared in the West End, at Chichester Festival Theatre and the National Theatre, as well as with the RSC. Tony received a knighthood in the Queen's Birthday Honours 2013.

The full cast of The Wind in the Willows is also announced today. Will Kemp reprises his role as Ratty. Kemp's extensive dance career has included originating the role of lead swan in Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake, as well as appearances at the Royal Opera House in Peter and the Wolf, Pinocchio and The Soldier's Tale. Kemp's acting credits include Nugget in the 2007 West End production of Equus opposite Daniel Radcliffe and Mercutio in Tamara Harvey's production of Romeo and Juliet at Middle Temple Hall, as well as television roles on 90210 and New Tricks. His film credits include Step Up 2: The Streets, Miguel and William and Van Helsing. Completing the woodland quartet, Cris Penfold will play Toad, Christopher Akrill will play Badger and Clemmie Sveaas will play Mole. Other members of the company include: Ewan Wardrop, Paul James Rooney, Kayleigh Gore, Connor Dowling, Kirsty Mather, Anna Martine, Jo Meredith and Aron Wild.

The commercial transfer of The Wind in the Willows this December marks a significant first for the Royal Opera House. CMP will be presenting the Royal Opera House production, which is in its tenth anniversary year, for eight weeks at The Duchess Theatre. Tickets are on sale now.

Based on Kenneth Grahame's timeless classic, the adventures of four woodland friends are retold through dance, song, music and puppetry: From a dusty old attic a wonderful tale unfolds. The peace of the river bank is rocked by a speeding car, a galloping caravan, a racing train and criminal deeds cooked up in the depths of the Wild Wood.

The escapades of the hot-headed Toad and his loyal friends Ratty, Mole and Badger are brought to life in a production that has charmed audiences of all ages. Drawing inspiration from the music of Edwardian composer George Butterworth, the action is set to a score by Martin Ward.

Through Tuckett's choreography, narration written by former Poet Laureate Sir Andrew Motion and designs by The Quay Brothers and Nicky Gillibrand, Grahame's magical world will be conjured for audiences at the Duchess Theatre this Christmas.

Recommended for everyone aged 5 and over.

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