Stephen Daldry Directs Modern Reimagining of AN INSPECTOR CALLS At The Wallis
Stephen Daldry ("The Crown," Billy Elliot, The Inheritance) directs his National Theatre of Great Britain's landmark production of J.B. Priestley's classic thriller An Inspector Calls, hailed as the theatrical event of its generation and winner of an unprecedented number of awards, including three Olivier's, four Tony's and seven Drama Desk Awards, with an exclusive West Coast engagement at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts from Tuesday, January 22 to Sunday, February 10, 2019. Featuring an iconic grand-scale set, Daldry's masterpiece was first staged in London in 1992, went on to award-winning runs in the West End, Broadway and elsewhere, including Los Angeles at the Ahmanson Theatre in 1996, and has been seen by over 4 million theatergoers worldwide. Currently touring Washington, DC, Los Angeles, Chicago and Boston, An Inspector Calls has been described as, "an episode of 'The Twilight Zone' wrapped in an Agatha Christie mystery," and "a Broadway Phenomenon!" (The Washington Post). In London, critics called it "superbly tense...breathtaking, daring and faultless execution" (Daily Telegraph), "visually astonishing" (Daily Express) and "a riveting examination of conscience and class." (Sunday Express).
Daldry faithfully and expertly remounts An Inspector Calls as a modern reimagining of the original 1945 script, set in 1912, about Inspector Goole and his unexpected arrival at the prosperous Birling family home, shattering their peaceful dinner party by his investigations into the death of a young woman. His startling revelations shake the very foundations of their lives and challenge audiences to question their own consciences.
Cast members include Liam Brennan (Inspector Goole), Christine Kavanagh (Sybil Birling), Jeff Harmer (Arthur Birling), Andrew Macklin (Gerald Croft), Lianne Harvey (Sheila Birling), Hamish Riddle (Eric Birling) and Diana Payne-Myers (Edna).
"Daldry's iconic production of An Inspector Calls was a transformative moment for theater in the UK," says The Wallis' artistic director Paul Crewes. "Daldry, and his designer, Ian MacNeil, created an aesthetic that helped tell this story to a whole new generation of audiences. It's one of the most gorgeous pieces of theater I've seen."
Tickets, $35 to $105, are on sale now and, available at TheWallis.org/Inspector. The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts is located at 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd, Beverly Hills. To purchase tickets and for more information, please call 310-746-4000 or visit: TheWallis.org/Inspector.
About the Artists:
Stephen Daldry (Director), lauded for his work as director and producer of film, theater, and television, is Executive Producer and Director on the highly acclaimed Netflix series "The Crown." He directed The Inheritance by Matthew Lopez to critical acclaim and a sell-out run at the Young Vic Theatre; it transferred to the Noel Coward Theatre this fall and will premiere next year on Broadway. Currently, Daldry's co-production, with director Justin Martin, of The Jungle by Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson is playing to huge acclaim at the Playhouse Theatre after its highly successful run at the Young Vic Theatre and will have its American premiere this month at St Ann's Warehouse in New York. He was Creative Executive Producer of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. He has also directed at the National Theatre, The Public Theatre in New York and transferred many productions both to Broadway and the West End, including his award-winning 1992 National Theatre production of An Inspector Calls. Billy Elliot the Musical opened at the Victoria Palace Theatre in 2005 where it ran for 11 years. It has also played on Broadway, in Holland, Seoul, Sydney, Melbourne, Chicago, Toronto, Tokyo and across the US. In 2009, the production won ten Tony awards, including Best Musical, more than any other British show in Broadway history. It recently completed an 18 month tour of the UK and Ireland, finishing its highly successful run in Hamburg. Daldry directed The Audience and Skylight to critical acclaim both in London and on Broadway with Skylight winning a Tony award for Best Revival. His first four films, Billy Elliot, The Hours, The Reader and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, together received 19 Academy Award nominations and two wins. His film, Trash, set in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, was nominated for Best Film Not In The English Language at the 2015 BAFTAs. He also directed for BBC Radio and Television. He is Co-Director of Pier 55 in New York and also on the Board of The Perelman Arts Center at the World Trade Center, Ground Zero, New York. Daldry started his career at the Sheffield Crucible Theatre and directed extensively in Britain's regional theaters. In London he was Artistic Director of The Gate Theatre and The Royal Court Theatre where he headed the £26million redevelopment.
Liam Brennan (Inspector Goole) has worked extensively in theater in Scotland, England and Ireland since graduating from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in 1987. Most recent work includes: Richard III and Twelfth Night (Shakespeare's Globe/ Apollo Theatre/Belasco Theatre, New York) and Diary of a Madman (Traverse Theatre/the Gate), for which he was awarded Best Actor at the Edinburgh Festival in 2016. He also performed the title role of Edward II, Bolingbroke, MacDuff, Angelo and Orsino, all for Shakespeare's Globe, London. Television includes "Shetland," "Machair," "High Road," "Bad Boys," "Taggart" and "Strathblair." Films include No Man's Land, Feetsteps, Crowman, Time Teens: the Beginning and Gas Attack. Bennan has recorded numerous dramas and stories for BBC Radio, and won the 2006 Critics' Award for Theatre in Scotland in the Best Actor category.
CHRISTINE KAVANAGH (Sybil Birling) has worked extensively in theater, television, film and radio. Her theater credits include Hedda Gabler (National Theatre UK tour), Man and Superman (National Theatre), The Importance of Being Earnest (Harold Pinter Theatre), Albert Speer (National Theatre), The Liar (Old Vic), The Rehearsal (Almeida and Garrick), Basket Case (Northampton Royal Derngate), A Doll's House (Lyric, Belfast), Macbeth (RSC), Hamlet (Nottingham Playhouse), All My Sons (Redgrave Theatre), The Revengers Comedies (Scarborough), Last Easter (Birmingham Rep), Much Ado About Nothing (RSC), She Stoops to Conquer (Oxford Playhouse), Travesties (Oxford Playhouse) and The Rivals (York Theatre Royal). On television, she's been seen in "Vera" (ITV), "Titanic" (ITV), "Room with a View" (ITV), "A Very British Coup" (Skreba Films), "The Blackheath Poisonings" (Central Films), "Catherine Cookson"/"The Glass Virgin" (Festival film and ITV), "Chimera" (Zenith Films), "Drop the Dead Donkey" (Hat Trick/Channel 4), "Frank Stubbs" (Noel Gay TV), "In His Life the John Lennon Story" (NBC), "Inspector Lynley" (BBC), "Inspector Morse" (Channel 4), "Island Gardens" (BBC), "Doctors" (BBC), "Jonathan Creek" (BBC), "Manchild" (BBC), "Minder" (Thames TV), "Ruth Rendell Mysteries" (TVS), "Seaforth" (BBC), "Sleeper" (BBC), "The Bretts" (Central TV), "Return of Sherlock Holmes" (Tiger Aspect), "Agony Too" (BBC), "Material Girl" (Carnival Films), "The Saint" (D L Taffner), "Doctor Who" (BBC) and "The Sleeper, Underbelly" (BBC Initial films). Film appearances include Man and Superman NT Live (National Theatre), and on radio she's been featured in Home Front, I Claudius, and Charles Paris for BBC radio four and as member of the BBC radio drama company. She also narrates audio books. voiceportrait.co.uk; www.thevoicehouse.co.uk
Jeff Harmer (Arthur Birling) trained at the Webber Douglas Academy. His theater credits include: Richard Willey in Out of Order (directed by Ray Cooney), Field Marshal Haig in Oh What a Lovely War and Arthur Hoyle in Up 'n' Under (Oldham Coliseum); Henry Bingham in Fox on the Fairway, Headingly in Donkeys' Years, Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, As You Like It, DL in Feelgood and Henry Perkins in Funny Money (all Vienna's English Theatre); Tooley in Made in Dagenham (Queen's, Hornchurch); Rev Harry Harrington in Shadowlands (number one tour); Vittorio Vidal in Sweet Charity (New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich); Susan Boyle's manager in the musical I Dreamed a Dream; (national tour); Clyde in The Witches of Eastwick (Watermill Theatre); Abanazar in Aladdin (Alhambra Theatre, Bradford); Highpockets in Buddy (Channel Islands); Othello and Richard III (Ludlow Festival); Sgt Major Drummond in Privates on Parade (West Yorkshire Playhouse and Birmingham Rep); Bill Austen in Mamma Mia! (international tour); Koko in The Hot Mikado (directed by Craig Revel Horwood for the Watermill Theatre, Newbury, and subsequent national tour); King Rat in Dick Whittington and the Duke of Ephesus in The Comedy of Errors (Northcott Theatre, Exeter); Bob Acres in The Rivals, The Blue Room (all male roles) and Bob Cratchit in A Christmas Carol (Swan Theatre, Worcester); The Roy Orbison Story (Bill Kenwright national tour); Prospero in Return to the Forbidden Planet and Billy Flynn in Chicago (English Theatre Frankfurt); Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet and George Osborne in Vanity Fair (Sherman Theatre, Cardiff); Antipholus in The Comedy of Errors (national tour); Bottom in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Dr Seward in Dracula and Badger in The Wind in the Willows (Liverpool Playhouse); Robert in Stage Struck (Grand, Swansea); Alfredo du Lac in Eurydice (Whitehall Theatre, West End) and Jon Forsyte in The Forsyte Saga with Nyree Dawn Porter (national tour). Television and film appearances include Prince Andrew in Diana: Her True Story (NBC); Herr Luytnant in Norbert Smith - a Life (Channel 4); Agatha Christie's Poirot, The Bill and Kidnap and Ransom (ITV); Family Affairs (Channel 5); Westbeach (BBC); The Runaway (Sky TV); Il consul Italiano (Film Italia) and Saplings and Gilbert Without Sullivan (BBC Radio 4).
ANDREW MACKLIN's (Gerald Croft) theatee credits include The Baleful Lie (Tristan Bates Theatre), Jane Wenham: The Witch of Walkern (Out of Joint/Watford Palace/Arcola Theatre/Tour), The Beauty Queen of Leenane (Curve Theatre), Someone Who'll Watch Over Me (Chipping Norton Theatre), The Mercy Seat (York Theatre Royal), King Lear, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Three Sisters (Abbey Theatre), The Only True History of Lizzie Finn (Southwark Playhouse), Brighton (Garter Lane Arts Centre), The Beauty Queen of Leenane (Watford Palace), I'll be the Devil (RSC/Tricycle), All Over Town, The Irish Curse (Project Theatre, Dublin), 24 Hour Plays: Lucy's Brief Guide to Being Human (Old Vic), Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk (Salisbury Playhouse), The Cure at Troy (Floodtide Theatre Company), Much Ado About Nothing (Bath Theatre Royal), Don't Look Back (dreamthinkspeak), Markings (Attic Theatre Company) and A Passionate Woman (Mill at Sonning). His television credits include "Jubilee Nurse," "Mr Selfridge" and "Fair City." @actthemacklin
LIANNE HARVEY (Sheila Birling) trained at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Her work in theater includes Juliet in Romeo and Juliet (UK and International tour), Relatively Speaking (Oldham Coliseum, Harrogate Theatre), The Railway Children and Trials of Mary (Eastern Angles), Heartbreak House (Union Theatre), Enveloped in Velvet (Arts Theatre), The Daughter in Law, Mercury Fur, and The Witch of Edmonton (while at RADA). Television appearances includes "Not Safe for Work" (Channel 4), and she played the female lead in 2017's feature film Bikini Blue for multi Academy Award-nominated Studio Filmowe Zebra, Warsaw. @LianneLHarvey
Hamish Riddle (Eric Birling) trained at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. His theater credits include An Inspector Calls (Playhouse Theatre, West End/PW Productions/National Theatre and 2015-2016 UK tour), Tory Boyz, Prince of Denmark, Romeo and Juliet, Pope Joan, Black and White and As You Like It (NYT) and Prince of Denmark (National Theatre). Short films include Arthur (lead) in Their War (Chalice Films, dir. Max Mason). @HamishRiddle
Diana Payne-Myers (Edna) was born in 1928 in Darlington, County Durham. She took dance classes in ballet, tap and musical comedy as a child, taught by Violet Ballantine, who at the time was also teaching the princesses Elizabeth and Margaret Rose. Diana and her young dancing companions raised much money for charity with performances at the Theatre Royal York, Theatre Royal Newcastle, the Scala in Soho, London and Raby Castle. Shortly after the Second World War, she came to London where she trained and danced with the Ballet Rambert. She also appeared in pantomimes, summer seasons and variety as a sister act with horses & dogs, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, tightrope walkers and Max Miller. She appeared with Evelyn Laye and Anton Walbrook in Wedding in Paris at the London Hippodrome; A Girl Called Joe at the Piccadilly Theatre with Denis Quilley and Edward Woodward; For Adults Only, a satirical revue at the Aldwych Theatre; and was a founder member of Sadler's Wells Opera Ballet. Later, Payne-Myers toured to Europe, America and Australia with Lloyd Newson's DV8 Physical Theatre Company. She also worked with choreographers Matthew Hawkins, Arthur Pita and Wayne McGregor. Among her many credits as a dancer is participating in the Elixir Festival: Celebrating Lifelong Creativity at Sadler's Wells Theatre in 2017. She appeared in Caryl Churchill's The Skriker and in Tennessee Williams' Baby Doll both at the Cottesloe, National Theatre and Daniel Kramer's Woyzeck at the Gate and in New York. She has performed in Stephen Daldry's iconic production of An Inspector Calls on more occasions than any other actor, having first appeared as Edna at the Garrick Theatre in the 1990s, in subsequent UK Tours, at the Aldwych and in Australia. In the 2002 New Year's Honours list, she was awarded an MBE for Services to Dance.
PHOTO CREDIT: Mark Douet