Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre

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Sherman Theatre Artistic Director Rachel O'Riordan is to direct a radical reimagining of Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard by the celebrated playwright Gary Owen. Following their recent collaboration Killology, which premiered at Sherman Theatre in spring 2017 followed by a run at The Royal Court Theatre, and the award-winning Iphigenia in Splott in 2015, The Cherry Orchard marks the first time they have worked together on an adaptation of a classic.

The Sherman Theatre presents The Cherry Orchard, running 13-28 October, with press night set for 17 October 2017. BroadwayWorld has a sneak peek at the company in rehearsal below!

Published in 1904 shortly before the Russian Revolution, Chekhov's comedy play captures a world on the brink of social upheaval. It is a witty, compassionate study of humanity's flaws, foibles and our refusal to face what is right in front of us. Owen's take on The Cherry Orchard places the action in early 80s Britain, at the dawn of another revolution - the Thatcher regime, which swept away the post-war consensus and created the country we live in today. It is to be set in a rambling, ramshackle old manor house on the sun-kissed south Pembrokeshire coast where Rainey raised her children, surrounded by golden beaches and lush green orchards. But the untimely death of her beloved son and husband sent her fleeing to London, abandoning what remained of her family. Now, with the bank threatening to repossess, Rainey is forced back home to face her ghosts - and her furious daughters - or lose everything.

Denise Black, whose stage appearances include a Manchester Evening News Award-winning performance in Roots at Manchester's Royal Exchange Theatre (2010), the role of Mari Hoff The Rise and Fall of Little Voice (2004), the 2010 national tour of Calendar Girls and the first UK tour of Sister Act (2011) will play Rainey, a character modelled on Chekhov's Ranevskaya. Denise is also known for her long running role as hairdresser Denise Osbourne in Coronation Street and appearances in Russell T. Davies' Queer as Folk and Cucumber.

Simon Armstrong, another Coronation Street veteran who more recently appeared in Twelfth Night at Manchester Royal Exchange Theatre, joins the cast as Gabriel (Gaev). Game of Thrones aficionados may recognise him as Qhorin Halfhand, the Nights Watchman who sacrifices his life to Jon Snow.

Morfydd Clark, tipped by the Observer as a rising star of 2017 following her performance as Cordelia alongside Glenda Jackson in King Lear at the Old Vic, Les Liasons Dangereuses at the Donmar and Gary Owen's Royal Court debut Violence and Son, will play Anya. Morfydd has also given notable screen performances opposite Kate Beckinsale in Love and Friendship and with Maxine Peake in The Falling.

Richard Mylan joins the cast following his acclaimed performance in Killology to play Ceri, inspired by Trofimov. Richard has worked extensively in theatre, film and television (including playing Oliver in cult BBC sitcom Coupling) since his West End debut in 1992, in particular in several productions with Frantic Assembly. Hedydd Dylan (Valerie) recently starred as Constance Chatterley in the Sheffield Theatres production of Lady Chatterley's Lover which then toured. Matthew Bulgo will take the role of Lewis (Lopahkin). The cast is completed by Alexandria Riley as Dottie (Dunyasha) who most recently performed in Alan Harris's How My Light Is Spent at Sherman Theatre, a co-production with Royal Exchange Theatre and Theatre by the Lake.

For tickets and more information, visit www.shermantheatre.co.uk.

Photo Credit: Mark Douet

high res photos

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Morfydd Clark (Anya)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Morfydd Clark (Anya) and Richard Mylan (Ceri)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Denise Black (Rainey)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Rachel O'Riordan (Director)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Rachel O'Riordan (Director) and Richard Mylan (Ceri)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Hedydd Dylan (Valerie) and Matthew Bulgo (Lewis)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Alexandria Riley (Dottie)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Simon Armstrong (Gabriel)

Photo Flash: Inside Rehearsal for THE CHERRY ORCHARD at Sherman Theatre
Matthew Bulgo (Lewis)



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