Jasper Britton, Sia Dauda, and More Will Lead The Menier Chocolate Factory's Revival Of PACK OF LIES
With Spamilton: An American Parody currently running at the theatre, the Menier Chocolate Factory today announces full casting for their major revival of Hugh Whitemore's Pack of Lies. Hannah Chissick directs Jasper Britton as (Stewart), Sia Dauda (Sally), Alasdair Harvey (Peter Kroger), Chris Larkin (Bob Jackson), Macy Nyman (Julie Jackson), Tracy-Ann Oberman (Helen Kroger), Natalie Walter (Thelma) and Finty Williams (Barbara Jackson). The production opens on 1 October, with previews from 20 September, and runs until 17 November.
The Jacksons are a nice middle aged English couple. Their best friends are the Krogers, their Canadian neighbours. All is blissful in their world until a detective from Scotland Yard asks to use their house as an observation station to foil a Soviet spy ring operating in the area. They are really put to the test when the detective asks them to help set a trap. Should they betray their friends... Or their country?
Hugh Whitemore adapted Pack of Lies from his Act of Betrayal which was part of the Play for Today television series. Inspired by a real-life events, the story is based on Bill and Ruth Search and their teenage daughter Gay Search (who later became a television presenter and journalist), who find themselves at the centre of the investigations into the Portland Soviet spy ring. This new production is the first London revival since it premièred at the Lyric Theatre in 1983 with real life husband and wife Judi Dench and Michael Williams - Dench received an Olivier Award for her performance.
Jasper Britton returns to the Menier Chocolate Factory to play Stewart - he previously appeared in Little Shop of Horrors. His theatre work includes Jerusalem (The Watermill Theatre), Scrooge, What the Butler Saw (Curve, Leicester), The Blinding Light (Jermyn Street Theatre), The Libertine (Theatre Royal Bath and Theatre Royal Haymarket), Richard II, Henry IV, The Jew of Malta, Marat/Sade (RSC), Race, Private Lives (Hampstead Theatre), The Last Cigarette (Chichester Festival Theatre and West End), Oedipus (National Theatre), Plague Over England (Finborough Theatre) and Rhinoceros (Royal Court Theatre). His television work includes Garrow's Law, The Royal, Semi Detached, My Dad's the Prime Minister and Murder in Mind; and for film, Rise of the Foot Soldiers 2, Blood, Anonymous, Morris: A Life with Bells On, Black Beard, Nostradamus and The New World.
Sia Dauda plays Sally. Her theatre work includes Flashdance (UK tour), We Will Rock You, The Gift (RCCL) and Sleeping Beauty (Northampton).
Alasdair Harvey returns to the Menier to play Peter Kroger - he previously appeared in Forbidden Broadway and Sunday in the Park with George (also Wyndham's Theatre). His other theatre work includes Mamma Mia! (Novello Theatre), We Will Rock You (Dominion Theatre), Come Dancing (Theatre Royal Stratford East), Side by Side by Sondheim (The Venue Leicester Square) and Guys and Dolls (Royal Lyceum Edinburgh). For television, his work includes Taggart, The Bill (as semi-regular Bruce Malcolm), River City (as series regular Ewan Patterson) and Birds of a Feather.
Chris Larkin plays Bob Jackson. His theatre credits include Again (Trafalgar Studios), Stevie (Chichester Festival Theatre, Hampstead Theatre), Noises Off (The Old Vic), Yes, Prime Minister (Apollo Theatre), The Whisky Taster (Bush Theatre), The Lady from Dubuque (Haymarket Theatre), His Dark Materials (National Theatre), When We Are Married (Chichester Festival Theatre, Savoy Theatre) and A Taste of Honey (Theatre Clwyd). Television credits include Next of Kin, Father Brown, Black Sails, The Coroner, Churchill's Secret, Coalition, Yes Prime Minister, Shackleton and Roger Roger; and for film, Valkyrie, Heroes and Villians, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Tea with Mussolini, Jane Eyre and Angels and Insects.
Macy Nyman plays Julie Jackson. Her theatre work includes The Stepmother (Minerva Theatre), Posh (Pleasance Theatre), Peter Pan (Northcott Theatre Exeter) and The BFG (Octagon Theatre Bolton). For television, her works incudes The Coroner and Poirot: Hallowe'en Party; and for film, Run Fatboy Run and Foster.
Tracy-Ann Oberman plays Helen Kroger. For theatre, her work includes Present Laughter, Fiddler on the Roof (Chichester Festival Theatre), Stepping Out (Vaudeville Theatre and UK tour), McQueen (Theatre Royal Haymarket and St James Theatre), God Child, Old Money, On the Rocks (Hampstead Theatre), Earthquakes in London (National Theatre and UK tour) and Boeing Boeing (Comedy Theatre). For television her work includes Friday Night Dinner (series regular Aunty Val), New Tricks (as semi-regular Fiona Kennedy), Crims, Siblings, Father Brown, Give Out Girls, Toast of London, Best of Men, Monroe, Waterloo Road, Mistresses and EastEnders (series regular Chrissie Watts); and for film, Where's Anne Frank, The Casanova Variations, Hector and the Search for Happiness, Filth, Wall, Girl Number 9 and The Infidel.
Natalie Walter returns to the Menier to play Thelma - she previously appeared in Smash. For theatre her work includes Jerusalem (The Watermill Theatre), A Little Hotel on the Side (Theatre Royal Bath), Lingua Franca (Finborough Theatre), 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover (Bush Theatre), Hay Fever (Chichester Festival Theatre), A Midsummer Night's Dream, Love's Labour's Lost (RSC), Whipping It Up (UK tour), Habeas Corpus (Donmar Warehouse) and Piano/Forte (Royal Court Theatre). Her television work includes Family Tree, Above Suspicion, Jonathan Creek, Doctor Who and Babes in the Wood; and for film, The Wedding Video, Cockneys vs Zombies, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, Lady Godiva, The Honey Trap and Remember Me.
Finty Williams plays Barbara Jackson. Her theatre work includes The Divide (The Old Vic), Blithe Spirit (The Mill at Sonning), Dinner with Friends (Park Theatre), The Vote (Donmar Warehouse - also More4), The Armour (Defibrillator Theatre), The Lightning Child, Macbeth, Bedlam (Shakespeare's Globe), Luise Miller (Donmar Warehouse) and Twelfth Night (National Theatre). Her television work includes Doc Martin, The Cranford Chronicles, Born and Bred and Tales From the Crypt; and for film, Six Minutes to Midnight, We Can Be Heroes, Delicious, The Good Night, Ladies in Lavender, Gosford Park, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Secret Rapture and Mrs Brown.
Hugh Whitemore (1936 - 2018) began his writing career in British television (contributing to The Wednesday Play, Armchair Theatre and Play for Today) and twice received Writers' Guild Awards. Film credits include The Return of the Soldier (an adaptation of the novel by Rebecca West), Mel Brooks' production of 84 Charing Cross Road, Utz, (an adaptation of Bruce Chatwin's novel) and Franco Zeffirelli's Jane Eyre. His other stage plays include Stevie, Breaking the Code, The Best of Friends, It's Ralph, A Letter of Resignation, Disposing of the Body, God Only Knows and a new version of Pirandello's As You Desire Me. These plays have been translated into many languages and produced throughout the world. His work has twice been named Best Single TV drama by the UK Broadcasting Press Guild, he has received the Scripter Award in Hollywood (for 84 Charing Cross Road), the Script Prize at the 1998 Monte Carlo Festival (for his adaptation of A Dance to the Music of Time) and a special Communications Award from the American Mathematical Society (for Breaking the Code). He was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and an Honorary Fellow of King's College, London.
Hannah Chissick directs. Her most recent work includes Mother Courage and Her Children and the UK professional première of the musical Side Show (Southwark Playhouse), Down the Dock Road (Liverpool Royal Court), both for the NYMT - Brass (Hackney Empire) and Sunday in the Park With George (The Other Palace), Rags and Amour (Royal Academy of Music), Marry Me a Little (St James Studio) and Teechers (John Godber Theatre Company). She was Assistant Director to Matthew Warchus on the play Art in London and New York and was Associate Director on his acclaimed production of Boeing Boeing, directing casts in London, on Broadway and in Melbourne. In 2003, she became the youngest women to become an Artistic Director in the UK, when Harrogate Theatre appointed her at the age of 25. Other credits include the critically-acclaimed revival of Side by Side by Sondheim (The Venue, London), Abigail's Party (Northcott Theatre Exeter), Teechers (Haymarket Theatre, Basingstoke), a tour of Grumpy Old Women Live, the world première of Horrid Henry - Live (tour and West End), and the world premiere of Pushing Up Poppies (Theatre503).