New Productions And Further Casting Announced For Theatre Royal Bath's Summer Season 2019

By: Apr. 19, 2019
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New Productions And Further Casting Announced For Theatre Royal Bath's Summer Season 2019

Theatre Royal Bath today announces four additional productions - Vienna 1934-Munich 1938, The Life I Lead, Trying It On and The Man in the White Suit, to complete its Summer Season 2019 programme and further casting with Katherine Parkinson, Janie Dee as well as Vanessa Redgrave, Miles Jupp and David Edgar among the stars set to take to the stage in both treasured classics and acclaimed new works.

The Summer Season runs from June through to September and will open with the UK premiere of Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike in the Ustinov Studio, starring Janie Dee (Follies), Michelle Asante (Our Lady of Kibeho), Aysha Kala (Obsession) and Lewis Reeves (My Night with Reg).

The production will be followed by Blithe Spirit, directed by Richard Eyre and starring Jennifer Saunders and Lisa Dillon as previously announced, with Emma Naomi (Pinter at the Pinter), Geoffrey Streatfeild (Spooks), Simon Coates (Richard III), Lucy Robinson (Cold Feet) and Rose Wardlaw (Outlying Islands) completing the cast.

Further casting is also revealed for Uncle Vanya in which Rupert Everett makes his directorial debut and stars in the title role. He will be joined by Katherine Parkinson (Home, I'm Darling), Clémence Poésy (In Bruges, Harry Potter), Ann Mitchell (Widows, EastEnders), John Light (Mary Stuart), John Standing (The First Churchills) and Marty Cruickshank (Call the Midwife).

New plays added to Theatre Royal Bath's Summer Season line-up will see Vanessa Redgrave's Vienna 1934 - Munich 1938, A Family Album in which she also stars alongside Robert Boulter and Paul Hilton, followed by Trying It On written by acclaimed dramatist David Edgar and which will mark his professional debut as a performer, directed by Christopher Haydon, both in the Ustinov Studio. Main House productions include The Life I Lead starring Miles Jupp and directed by Didi Hopkins and Selina Cadell, and The Man in the White Suit adapted by Sean Foley and starring Stephen Mangan and Kara Tointon immediately prior to a West End transfer.

As previously announced, the summer programme will also include William Boyd's The Argument (7-24 August) starring Felicity Kendal, with further casting to be announced in due course.

Tickets for all productions are now on sale at

VANYA and sonia and masha and spike
Thursday 6 June - Saturday 6 July
Press Night: Wednesday 12 June

Tony Award-winning Walter Bobbie directs Christopher Durang's comedy Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike in the Ustinov Studio to open the Theatre Royal Bath's Summer Season 2019 starring Janie Dee, Michelle Asante, Aysha Kala and Lewis Reeves.

The original production premiered at the McCarter Theatre and Lincoln Center Theater in 2012 and after a successful run it transferred to Broadway where it received six Tony Award nominations and won the 2013 Tony Award for Best Play.

Vanya and his sister Sonia live a quiet life in the Pennsylvania farmhouse where they grew up. But their sister Masha escaped many years ago and became a famous movie star. When Masha returns unannounced with her twenty-something boy toy, Spike, so begins a rollicking weekend of rivalry, regret and all-too true premonitions.

Michelle Asante most recently performed on stage in Our Lady of Kibeho (Royal and Derngate) and previously in Things of Dry Hours (Young Vic), Welcome Home Captain Fox (Donmar), Ruined (Almeida) and Torn (Arcola). Michelle's TV credits include Dr Who, Holby City, Casualty, Our Girl 2 and Father Brown.

Janie Dee recently completed a critically acclaimed run in the title role of Linda (Manhattan Theatre Club), for which she was nominated for an Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play, and Follies (National Theatre), for which she was nominated for the Evening Standard Award for Best Musical Performance and the WhatsOnStage Award for Best Actress in a Musical. Janie has also appeared in Channel 4's Chimerica and Crashing as well as the BBC's The Murder Room and Midsomer Murders.

Aysha Kala was named BAFTA breakthrough Brit of 2015. She has performed on stage in An Adventure (Bush Theatre), Obsession (Barbican), Punkplay (Southwark Playhouse), Djinns of Eidgah (Royal Court) and Much Ado About Nothing (RSC). Television appearances include Channel 4's Indian Summers and Shameless.

Lewis Reeves' theatre credits include My Night with Reg (West End), Our Boys (Duchess Theatre) and The Wider Earth (The Dead Puppet Society). Television credits also include DC Jake Collier in Unforgotten, Crazyhead, and Misfits.

Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike is produced by special arrangement with Joey Parnes, Larry Hirschorn, Sue Wagner and John Johnson.

Friday 14 June - Saturday 6 July
Press night: Wednesday 19 June

Jennifer Saunders, one of the UK's most popular comic actors, makes her Theatre Royal Bath debut as the preposterous clairvoyant Madame Arcati in Noël Coward's classic comedy Blithe Spirit. She is joined by Lisa Dillon as Ruth Condomine with Emma Naomi, Geoffrey Streatfeild, Simon Coates, Lucy Robinson and Rose Wardlaw completing the cast.

The production brings together a multi-award-winning creative team, directed by former National Theatre director Richard Eyre with design by Anthony Ward and lighting by Howard Harrison.

Written in 1941, Coward's inventive comedy proved light relief at the height of World War II when it was first staged. The show had a record-breaking run in the West End and on Broadway and remains one of the playwright's most popular works.

Novelist Charles Condomine and his second wife Ruth are literally haunted by a past relationship when an eccentric medium inadvertently conjures up the ghost of his first wife, Elvira, at a séance. When she appears, visible only to Charles, and determined to sabotage his current marriage, life - and the afterlife - get complicated.

Simon Coates's stage credits include Richard III (Almeida), 1984 (West End), The Cherry Orchard (Royal Exchange, Bristol Old Vic), King John (Shakespeare's Globe). He has also toured the UK with Regeneration, The Misanthrope, Romeo & Juliet and The Hypochondriac.

Emma Naomi starred recently in Pinter at the Pinter (Jamie Lloyd Productions/ATG), Bread and Roses (Oldham Coliseum), The Cherry Orchard (Bristol Old Vic, Manchester Royal Exchange), Dead Don't Floss (National Theatre), Don Juan in Soho (Wyndham's Theatre) and, for television, Channel 4's Chimerica.

Lucy Robinson's stage credits include Waste, The Hard Problem (National Theatre), Handbagged (Vaudeville), Sweet Bird of Youth (Old Vic), In the Next Room (Theatre Royal Bath). Her many TV credits include Cold Feet, Coronation Street, Call the Midwife, Doc Martin, Doctor and Pride and Prejudice.

Geoffrey Streatfeild has appeared on TV in Spooks, The Hollow Crown, The Thick of It and The Other Boleyn Girl, and on film in Making Noise Quietly, The Lady in the Van, Kinky Boots and A Royal Night Out. Stage credits include the Histories Cycle (RSC), Cell Mates (Hampstead), The Beaux Stratagem (National Theatre) and My Night with Reg (Donmar).

Rose Wardlaw recently performed in Outlying Islands at the King's Head. She has previously appeared in Eyam, The Winter's Tale (Shakespeare's Globe), Jubilee (Lyric Hammersmith) and Great Expectations (West Yorkshire Playhouse) and, for television, Call the Midwife and Doctors.

Blithe Spirit is presented by arrangement with Lee Dean.

VIENNA 1934 - Munich 1938, A FAMILY ALBUM
Thursday 11 July - Saturday 3 August

Theatre Royal Bath presents a Rose Theatre Kingston Production, Vienna 1934 - Munich 1938, A Family Album, written, directed by and starring Vanessa Redgrave in the Ustinov Studio. She will be joined on stage by Robert Boulter and Paul Hilton.

In the late 1930s, the illustrious actor Michael Redgrave became close friends with the celebrated poet Stephen Spender. Through their families' notebooks, journals and memoirs, and Stephen's poems, Vanessa Redgrave discovers the love affairs they remembered, and the hopes and fears of a generation that confronted the rise of fascism in Europe. Among these was the German writer Thomas Mann. As Stephen's love and respect for a young American woman studying psychology in Vienna grew deeper, he and his secretary Tony Hyndman tried to assist her in obtaining false visas and passports for socialist Jews and their families to escape from fascist Austria.

Written and directed by Vanessa Redgrave, daughter of Michael Redgrave, the play highlights the affectionate and intimate thoughts of individuals during these years of political and social disaster.

Vanessa Redgrave is regarded as one of the greatest actors of her generation. She has won a plethora of awards including an Olivier Award for The Aspern Papers and a Tony Award for Long Day's Journey into Night. She also received Tony nominations for The Year of Magical Thinking and Driving Miss Daisy. She is a is a six-time Oscar nominee, winning for Julia. Her narration of Call the Midwife has brought her voice to millions. She recently appeared in The Inheritance in the West End for which she was nominated for a 2019 Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

Robert Boulter most recently appeared in the multi-Olivier Award winning The Inheritance (Young Vic, Noël Coward) and previously in Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again (RSC), The Odyssey, Karamazoo (National Theatre) and How to Curse (Bush). Screen credits include Star Wars Episode IX, Star Wars Episode VII and TV series' Evidence and Father Brown.

Paul Hilton has also recently performed in the four-times Olivier Award winning The Inheritance (Young Vic, Noël Coward) with other stage credits including Anatomy of a Suicide (Royal Court), Mosquitoes (National Theatre), The Cherry Orchard (Young Vic), A Mad World My Masters (Shakespeare's Globe) and All New People (Duke of York's). Television credits include The Crown, A Very English Scandal and Silent Witness.

Thursday 18 July - Saturday 3 August
Press Night: Wednesday 24 July

Rupert Everett returns to Theatre Royal Bath where he last appeared in The Judas Kiss in 2012 and which went on to transfer to the West End, and following recent critical acclaim as Oscar Wilde in The Happy Prince which he also wrote and directed. Everett will direct his first stage play and lead the cast in Anton Chekhov's theatrical masterpiece Uncle Vanya, a playful story of unrequited love, loss and misplaced dreams, in a new version by the playwright and screenwriter David Hare. Further cast includes Katherine Parkinson, Clémence Poésy, Ann Mitchell, John Light, John Standing and Marty Cruickshank, with additional casting to be announced.

It's late summer, at the close of the nineteenth century. In the heart of the Russian countryside, Vanya and his niece Sonya have worked for years to manage the ramshackle estate on behalf of his brother-in-law, a retired professor. When the professor arrives with his stunningly beautiful young wife and announces his plan to sell the estate, all their lives are thrown into turmoil.

Marty Cruickshank's television appearances include Catastrophe, Call the Midwife, Line of Duty and Lewis. On stage she has performed in Richard II (RSC), London Wall (Finborough), Pygmalion (Garrick), The Tinkers Wedding (Southwark Playhouse) and Charley's Aunt (Theatre Royal Bath and National Tour).

John Light was nominated for an Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his role in Taken at Midnight at Theatre Royal Haymarket. Theatre credits also include Mary Stuart (Almeida), The Winter's Tale (Shakespeare's Globe), The Blackest Black (Hampstead Theatre) and Luise Miller (Donmar). TV credits include Silk and Endeavour.

Ann Mitchell recently appeared in the film Farming, as well as Widows, Dragonfly and The Deep Blue Sea. Her many TV credits include Call the Midwife, Hetty Feather, EastEnders, Casualty, Gimme Gimme Gimme and Summer in the Suburbs. Previous stage credits include A View from Islington North (Arts Theatre), The Stock Da'wa (Hampstead Theatre), Innocence (Arcola) and a national tour of Angels in America.

Katherine Parkinson is a BAFTA-winning actress well known for starring in Channel 4's The IT Crowd and the Olivier Award winning comedy Home, I'm Darling (National Theatre). Stage credits also include Dead Funny (Vaudeville Theatre), Before The Party (Almeida), Absent Friends (Harold Pinter Theatre), 66 Books (Bush Theatre), School For Scandal (Barbican Theatre), Season's Greetings (National Theatre), Cock, The Seagull (Royal Court).

Clémence Poésy's film credits include Fleur Delacour in the Harry Potter films, 127 Hours, In Bruges, Tito Il Piccolo, Final Portrait, The Ones Below and Mr Morgan's Last Love. For TV, Clémence has also appeared in Gossip Girl, War and Peace, Birdsong and The Tunnel.

John Standing has performed extensively across theatre, television and film. TV credits include The First Churchills, Game of Thrones, NYPD Blue, In Deep and Murder She Wrote and V for Vendetta for film. Stage credits include Shadowlands (Wyndham's), A Delicate Balance (Haymarket), Son of Man (RSC) and Plunder (National Theatre).

Thursday 18 July - Saturday 3 August

The Life I Lead sees leading stand-up comedian Miles Jupp (Rev, The Thick of It, The News Quiz) bring to life the remarkable story of David Tomlinson, the actor best remembered for his performance as Mr Banks in the classic Disney film Mary Poppins. Didi Hopkins and Selina Cadell direct this richly comic and moving tale of fathers and sons across different generations.

David Tomlinson was renowned for playing the classic English gent, forthright, proper, and a loveable fool. His meeting with Walt Disney came to encapsulate his incredible life full of adventure and heartbreak. The man who portrayed one of cinema's most famous patriarchs was defined by his relationship with his own father - a remote eccentric, who was hiding an extraordinary tragicomic secret.

Miles Jupp's stage credits include Rules for Living and People (National Theatre) and Neville's Island (Chichester Festival Theatre). He frequently performs stand-up comedy, including UK tours of Miles Jupp is the Chap You're Thinking of, Miles Jupp: Songs of Freedom, Miles Jupp: Fibber in the Heat. For television, Miles has been seen in Howards End, Outumbered and Watership Down.

Didi Hopkins has worked across film, theatre, television and radio. She is a senior member of the National Theatre's Theatre Works team. She was consultant to Richard Bean on the award-winning One Man Two Guvnors which ran in the West End and on Broadway.

Selina Cadell directed the RSC in their first performance of Love for Love by William Congreve. She has performed extensively on stage including The Cherry Orchard (Old Vic, BAM New York), Twelfth Night (Donmar), A Monster Calls (Old Vic), The Dresser (Duke of York's) and People (National Theatre). TV include Queens of Mystery and Doc Martin.

trying it on
Tuesday 3 September - Saturday 7 September

After 50 years of writing, Trying It On marks playwright and contemporary political commentator David Edgar's professional debut as a performer in this fascinating deliberation on how, why and whether our opinions change in the course of time. The production is directed by Christopher Haydon.

It's 1968. David Edgar is 20 and in his second year at university. It is the height of the world-wide student revolt. The Vietnam war rages, Enoch Powell delivers his "rivers of blood" speech, Martin Luther King is assassinated. These events will define David's politics and give focus to his writing. It's 50 years on. The 70-year-old is confronted by the 20-year-old. Do they share the same beliefs? If not, is it the world that's changed, or him? Why did his generation vote Brexit? Has he sold in or sold out?

David Edgar has been writing critically acclaimed plays since 1971. His name is synonymous with the Royal Shakespeare Company where he is the venue's most performed living playwright and for whom his numerous plays include Destiny, winner of the John Whiting Award; The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, winner of a Tony Award and the Society of West End Theatres Best Play award; Maydays, winner of the Plays and Players Award for Best Play and Pentecost, winner of the Evening Standard Award for Best Play of the Year.

Christopher Haydon is the former Artistic Director of The Gate Theatre. His recent directing credits include the world premiere of The Remains of the Day, On The Exhale which won a Fringe First and Grounded, winner of the Off West End Best Production award.

the man in the whitE suit
Friday 6 September - Saturday 21 September

Stephen Mangan and Kara Tointon will star in the world premiere of the classic Ealing comedy The Man in the White Suit which previews in Bath prior to a West End transfer, presented by Jenny King, Jonathan Church, Matthew Gale and Mark Goucher. It is adapted for the stage by Sean Foley, based on the play "The Flower Within the Bud" by Roger MacDougall and the screenplay by Roger MacDougall, John Dighton and Alexander Mackendrick, by special arrangement with STUDIO CANAL.

When Sidney Stratton invents a fabric that never gets dirty and never wears out, manufacturers and trades unions are terrified by the threat it poses to their industry and their jobs. Only Daphne the mill owner's daughter, shows Sidney any support as his world gradually falls apart before he finds love. This fast-moving comedy reunites Stephen Mangan and Sean Foley who also created the Olivier award-winning production Jeeves and Wooster.

Stephen Mangan's many stage appearances include The Birthday Party, Jeeves and Wooster and The Norman Conquests, for which he received a Tony nomination. His many screen credits include the lead as Sean in Episodes for the BBC, and for the Bafta winning Green Wing.

Kara Tointon is best known for playing Dawn Swann in EastEnders, as the 2010 winner of Strictly Come Dancing and as Maria in ITV's The Sound of Music Live. Her West End credits include Pygmalion, Absent Friends and Relatively Speaking and she played Olivia in Twelfth Night for the RSC.

Sean Foley's many productions include most recently in the West End, The Dresser, The Miser and The Painkiller. He is a double Olivier Award winner and has recently been appointed as the next Artistic Director at Birmingham Rep. For The Man in the White Suit, he joins forces with designer Michael Taylor, with whom he also created The Ladykillers.