McKellen, Pickup, Rees & Kelly Will Be 'WAITING FOR GODOT' at the Theatre Royal Haymarket 21 January - 3 April 2010
Ian McKellen (Estragon) and Ronald Pickup (Lucky) will be joined by Roger Rees (Vladimir) and Matthew Kelly (Pozzo) in Sean Mathias' production of Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot which will have a further run at the Theatre Royal Haymarket from 21 January - 3 April 2010. Mathias' sell-out production opened in May this year following a national tour and played to packed houses through its run, breaking all previous Theatre Royal Haymarket Box Office records.
Waiting for Godot will preview from 21January and will complete its11 week run on the 3 April. Press Night is on 27 January 2010. Designs are by Stephen Brimson Lewis with lighting by Paul Pyant and sound by Paul Groothuis. Waiting for Godot is produced by the Theatre Royal Haymarket Company in partnership with Duncan C. Weldon Productions Ltd and Paul Elliott.
Waiting for Godot was the first production in Sean Mathias' season as Artistic Director of the Theatre Royal Haymarket Company. His production of Breakfast at Tiffany's with Anna Friel and Joseph Cross will complete its run on 9 January 2010.
Waiting for Godot follows two consecutive days in the lives of Vladimir and Estragon, who divert themselves by clowning around, joking and arguing, while waiting expectantly and unsuccessfully for the mysterious Godot. Beckett's Waiting for Godot exploded on to the London stage over 50 years ago when it shocked as many people as it delighted.
Ian McKellen, who made his Beckett debut as Estragon, has previously collaborated with Sean Mathias who has directed him as Uncle Vanya, the Captain in Dance of Death and as Widow Twankey twice. Since he started acting in 1961, he has worked non-stop on stage and screen. For the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Companies, McKellen has produced and acted in plays old and new, most recently on the RSC's world tour as King Lear. He produced and wrote the screenplay for his Richard III and was nominated for an Oscar for Gods and Monsters and for Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings. He recently played in Coronation Street and has completed ITV's remake of The Prisoner. Earlier this week Ian McKellen won the Lebedev Special Award for his contribution to Theatre at the Evening Standard Awards.Multi award-winning Roger Rees returns to London to play Vladimir. As well as extensive work for the Royal Shakespeare Company including Love's Labour's Lost, Cymbeline, Othello, Macbeth, The Merchant of Venice and Three Sisters, Rees' London theatre credits include Hapgood at the Aldwych Theatre, The Real Thing at the Strand Theatre and the RSC's Nicholas Nickleby at the Aldwych and Old Vic Theatres, which later transferred to Broadway and for which he won the Laurence Oliver and Tony Awards for Best Actor. His theatre credits in the US include A Man of No Importance for the Lincoln Center, Uncle Vanya at the Atkinson Theatre, The Rehearsal for the Roundabout Theatre, Indiscretions at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre and Hapgood in Los Angeles. On film his credits include Almost Perfect, The Pink Panther, Frida, A Christmas Carol and Robin Hood Men in Tights. On television he was a series regular in Cheers and guested regularly on Grey's Anatomy, The West Wing, M.A.N.T.I.S and Law and Order. Ronald Pickup returns to play Lucky. His theatre credits include Look Back in Anger at the Theatre Royal Bath, Amy's View, Three Sisters, Long Day's Journey Into Night, Richard II and As You Like It all for the National Theatre, Julius Caesar for the Royal Court, The Cherry Orchard at the Aldwych and Uncle Vanya both on tour and for the Rose Theatre Kingston. His many television credits include Sea of Souls, The Last Detective, Cambridge Spies, Waking the Dead, The Rector's Wife, Absolute Hell, Dr Jeykll and Mr Hyde, The Fortunes of War and Pope John Paul II. His film credits include Tulse Luper Suitcase, Lolita, The Fourth Protocol, The Mission, Camille and Never Say Never Again.Matthew Kelly will play Pozzo. He was most recently on stage at the Lyric Hammersmith in Sean Holmes production of Comedians. His other theatre credits include Lennie in Of Mice and Men for which he won the Best Actor Olivier Award, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf at the Trafalgar Studios, Troilus and Cressida at Shakespeare's Globe, Amadeus at Wilton's Music Hall, Forgotten Voices at the Riverside Studios and the Edinburgh Festival as well as Oh What A Lovely War at the Octagon Theatre Bolton and Samuel Beckett's Endgame at the Liverpool Everyman. Kelly has previously played Vladimir in Waiting for Godot at the Oxford Playhouse. On television his credits include the Cold Blood, Bleak House, Where The Heart Is and Marple. Earlier this year Kelly joined the Touring Consortium's Artistic Panel. Director and writer Mathias previously directed Triptych for the Market Theatre, Johannesburg and Southwark Playhouse, Ring Round the Moon for The Playhouse Theatre, Uncle Vanya, A Little Night Music and Les Parents Terribles all for the National Theatre, Dance of Death in London, on Broadway and in Australia, Aladdin for the Old Vic, as well as Talking Heads for the Theatre Royal Haymarket, Shoreditch Madonna for Soho Theatre and Design For Living at the Donmar, for both of which he was awarded the Evening Standard and Critics' Circle Best Director Award. Mathias also directed Bent at the Adelphi, National and Garrick Theatres and later directed a film version, winning the Prix de la Jeunesse at the Cannes Film Festival. His other Broadway credits include Marlene and Indiscretions for which he was nominated Best Director at the Tony Awards. Also in the US his productions include Company as part of the Kennedy Centre Sondheim Celebration and a production of The Cherry Orchard at the Mark Taper Forum starring Annette Bening.
For more information visit, www.waitingforgodottheplay.com.