Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Cast Announced For THE MERCHANT OF VENICE at Watford Palace Theatre and HOME Manchester

Performances run at Watford Palace Theatre, 27 February - 11 March 2023 and HOME Manchester, 15 – 25 March 2023.

Cast Announced For THE MERCHANT OF VENICE at Watford Palace Theatre and HOME Manchester

Joining Tracy-Ann Oberman in her portrayal of Shylock, Hannah Morrish plays Portia. An award-winning Shakespearean actress, Hannah is perhaps best known for her Octavia in Antony and Cleopatra at The National Theatre and her Lavinia in Titus Andronicus at the RSC. She was involved in workshop development of the project at the RSC earlier this year with Raymond Coulthard, who also joins the production as Antonio, his numerous television credits include regulars in Mr Selfridge and Hotel Babylon as well as an extensive career on the stage at the RSC, National Theatre, Donmar Warehouse amongst numerous others.

Continuing a legacy of championing recent graduates and rising stars, Gráinne Dromgoole, Priyank Morjaria and Xavier Starr join the team, all of whom graduated in the last three years.

Completing the cast are Adam Buchanan (Pride and Prejudice, Sheffield Crucible) and Jessica Dennis (Twelfth Night, Romeo + Juliet, The Orange Tree Theatre).

By presenting Shylock as a woman and placing the action in London in 1936 this production offers a rare and vivid insight into a dark chapter in our history, all too relevant to Britain today. Fascism is sweeping across Europe, and Oswald Mosley's British Union of Fascists threatens a paramilitary march through the Jewish East End. Shylock, a widowed survivor of anti-Semitic pogroms in Russia, hopes to give her daughter Jessica a better life. She runs a pawnbroking business from her house in Cable Street where Mosley will march. Charismatic heroine Portia and the Merchant himself, Antonio, are aristocratic Mosleyites, their playground is piano bars at the Ritz, bias cut silk gowns, white tie and tails. It's a vivid evocation of our history, and a warning for our times.

Director Brigid Larmour says "We've assembled a brilliant cast of actors to join Tracy-Ann. It's a creative mix of established leading actors with exciting recent graduates - just like when I gave our Portia, Hannah, her first job out of drama school in 2016! We have direct links with the history we explore in the production. Members of Tracy-Ann's family took part in the Battle of Cable St., a relative of Adam's witnessed it from an upstairs window at the age of five, and Jessica's grandmother was briefly arrested for 'plot to treason' in Germany in the 1930s."

Actress and producer Tracy-Ann Oberman adds "After our Covid cancellation, The Merchant of Venice (1936) has come back better and stronger with a most exciting future ahead. This team of actors are the dream team - fearless, brave, and talented. Ray and Hannah join us from our RSC workshop earlier this year, and I am looking forward to welcoming the full cast to discover our new 'Rialto' in Cable Street 1936."

27 February - 11 March 2023
Watford Palace Theatre
20 Clarendon Road, Watford, WD17 1JZ
Tues - Sat 7.30pm, Thurs and Sat matinees 2.30pm
Tickets from £15
watfordpalacetheatre.co.uk | 01923 225671

15 - 25 March 2023
HOME Manchester
2 Tony Wilson Pl, Manchester M15 4FN
7.30pm; 2pm matinees
Tickets from £10
homemcr.org | 0161 200 1500



Gary Davies Takes His Saturday Night Radio Show On Tour With Mastermixes, Dancers, and Sur Photo
Legendary DJ Gary Davies will bring the UK's biggest 80s radio show - BBC Radio 2's Sounds of the 80s - on tour for a series of unique live performances. It's the show that listeners enjoy every Saturday night, but live on stage.

BY THE WATERS OF LIVERPOOL Will Embark on UK Tour Photo
A brand new stage production documenting the early life of best-selling author Helen Forrester is going back on the road during Autumn 2023 after its inaugural tour came to a standstill at the start of the Covid pandemic. 

BIRDS AND BEES Comes to the Stephen Joseph Theatre Next Month Photo
A searing exploration into sex positivity, online safety and intersectionality comes to Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre next month. Birds and Bees is an enthralling play by renowned writer Charlie Josephine (I, Joan; Shakespeare’s Globe), which reached over 500 schools across the UK with online performances in 2020.

New Open-Air Theatre Will Open on a Lavender Farm in Surrey Photo
Just a stone's throw from London and set amidst rolling lavender fields, the Lavender Theatre will open for its inaugural summer season this July in Epsom.


More Hot Stories For You


BY THE WATERS OF LIVERPOOL Will Embark on UK TourBY THE WATERS OF LIVERPOOL Will Embark on UK Tour
February 1, 2023

A brand new stage production documenting the early life of best-selling author Helen Forrester is going back on the road during Autumn 2023 after its inaugural tour came to a standstill at the start of the Covid pandemic. 

BIRDS AND BEES Comes to the Stephen Joseph Theatre Next MonthBIRDS AND BEES Comes to the Stephen Joseph Theatre Next Month
February 1, 2023

A searing exploration into sex positivity, online safety and intersectionality comes to Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre next month. Birds and Bees is an enthralling play by renowned writer Charlie Josephine (I, Joan; Shakespeare’s Globe), which reached over 500 schools across the UK with online performances in 2020.

New Open-Air Theatre Will Open on a Lavender Farm in SurreyNew Open-Air Theatre Will Open on a Lavender Farm in Surrey
February 1, 2023

Just a stone's throw from London and set amidst rolling lavender fields, the Lavender Theatre will open for its inaugural summer season this July in Epsom.

Tobacco Factory Theatres Break Down Borders With New International Production Of THE WALLTobacco Factory Theatres Break Down Borders With New International Production Of THE WALL
January 31, 2023

Bristol's Tobacco Factory Theatres have joined forces with Madrid's Fundación Teatro de La Abadia to produce a new theatre experience that brings together performers from all over the world.

Geoff Norcott Brings New UK Tour to Worthing in MarchGeoff Norcott Brings New UK Tour to Worthing in March
January 31, 2023

For his sixth UK tour, Geoff Norcott will be trying to make sense of the current cultural and political scene with his playfully provocative brand of humour. Whether it's the dire blandness of the two main parties or the shamelessly shoe-horned right-on messages in adverts and films, Geoff will continue to delve into areas much of comedy leaves well alone.