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LONDON: SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE Initial Casting Announced

Lucy Briggs-Owen and Tom Bateman Lucy Briggs-Owen and Tom Bateman Photo: Simon Turtle

 

disney theatrical

INITIAL CASTING ANNOUNCED

Disney and Sonia Friedman Productions present

SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE

Based on the screenplay by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard

Adapted for the stage by Lee Hall

Director Declan Donnellan  Designer Nick Ormerod

Get Shakespeare in Love Tickets

Disney and Sonia Friedman Productionsare delighted to announce initial casting for star-crossed lovers Will Shakespeare and Viola De Lesseps in the forthcoming stage production of Shakespeare in Love.

 

Tom Bateman will play the role of Will Shakespeare and Lucy Briggs-Owen will play Viola De Lesseps.

Tom Bateman’s theatre credits include ‘Antonio’ in The Duchess of Malfi at The Old Vic; ‘Claudio’ in Much Ado About Nothing at the Wyndham’s Theatre; ‘Richard’ in The Lion in Winter at the Theatre Royal Haymarket and ‘Dante Gabriel Rossetti’ in Lizzie Siddal at the Arcola Theatre. He has played major roles in TV series Da Vinci’s Demons and The Tunnel.

Lucy Briggs-Owen’s theatre credits include: ‘Maryna’ in Boris Godunuv, ‘Princess’ in The Orphan of Zhao, ‘Helena’ in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, ‘Luscinda’ in Cardenio and ‘Anne’ in The City Madam all for the Royal Shakespeare Company; ‘Brooke Ashton’ in Noises Off in the West End; ‘Mrs Fainall’ in The Way of the World at Sheffield Crucible; ‘Cressida’ in Troilus and Cressida at the Barbican and on International Tour; ‘Vivie Warren’ in Mrs Warren’s Profession  in the West End and on Tour; ‘Blanche Satorius’ in Widowers’ Houses at Manchester’s Royal Exchange; ‘Sybil Chase’ in Private Lives at the Hampstead Theatre; ‘Cecily’ in The Importance of Being Earnest; and most recently as ‘Olga’ in Fortune’s Fool at The Old Vic. 

Shakespeare in Love has its world premiere at the Noël Coward Theatre on Wednesday 23 July 2014, with previews from 2 July. Further casting will be announced soon.

Based on the Academy Award®-winning screenplay by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard, Shakespeare in Love has been adapted for the stage by Lee Hall (Billy Elliot). Featuring a company of over 30 actors and musicians, this new play will be directed by Declan Donnellan and designed by Nick Ormerod, the driving force behind the world-renowned theatre company, Cheek by Jowl. Shakespeare in Love will be produced by Disney and Sonia Friedman Productions.

About Shakespeare in Love:

Promising young playwright Will Shakespeare is tormented by writer’s block until he finds his muse in the form of passionate noblewoman, Viola De Lesseps. Their forbidden love draws many others, including Queen Elizabeth, into the drama and inspires Will to write the greatest love story of all time, Romeo and Juliet.

This sweeping romantic comedy will transport you back to Shakespeare’s London, teeming with vibrant colors, characters, music and life.

Tickets for Shakespeare in Love at the Noël Coward Theatre are now on sale online at www.shakespeareinlove.com or by calling the box office on 0844 482 5141.  

Lee Hall, who has worked as a writer across theatre, TV, radio and film, won the 2009 Tony Award® for Best Book for his stage adaptation of Billy Elliot. The musical, which also won the Olivier Award for Best Musical in 2006 and the 2009 Tony Award for best musical, was based on his screenplay for the film of the same name which saw him nominated for an Academy Award®. In 2008, Hall won the London Evening Standard Award, Best Play for The Pitman Painters. Hall has been writer in residence at the Royal Shakespeare Company and Live Theatre and his screenplay for War Horse was directed by Steven Spielberg in 2011. Other theatre credits include Cooking With Elvis at Live Theatre in Newcastle, Spoonface Steinberg at the Ambassadors Theatre in the West End (adapted also for TV and radio) and Two’s Company at Live Theatre and Bristol Old Vic.

Declan Donnellan and Nick Ormerod formed Cheek by Jowl in 1981 and have since directed and designed over 30 productions for the company which have been performed in over 300 cities in 40 countries all over the world. With Cheek by Jowl, Donnellan and Ormerod have reimagined many of Shakespeare’s texts including the all male As You Like It, Twelfth Night, The Tempest, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Troilus and Cressida and Othello. Cheek by Jowl is an associate company of the Barbican in London where forthcoming collaborations include ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore from 9 April 2014 and Ubu Roi from 18 June 2014. In 1989 Donnellan was made Associate Director of the National Theatre where productions have included Fuente Ovejuna, Sweeney Todd, The Mandate and both parts of Tony Kushner’s Angels In America. Additional theatre credits include ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore, The Changeling, Great Expectations and British premiers of Outcry, Homebody/Kabul, Sara and Lady Betty (written by Donnellan). In 2000, Donnellan formed Moscow-based company The Chekhov Festival whose productions have included Boris Godunov and Three Sisters, and recently the pair co-directed feature film Bel Ami starring Robert Pattinson, Kristin Scott Thomas and Uma Thurman. His book, The Actor and The Target, originally published in Russian (2001), has since appeared in French, Spanish, Italian, German, Romanian and Mandarin.

Disney Theatrical Productions, a division of The Walt Disney Studios, was formed in 1994 and operates under the direction of Thomas Schumacher.  Worldwide, its eight Broadway titles have been seen by over 128 million theatregoers and have grossed over $9 billion.  With 15 productions currently produced or licensed, a Disney musical is being performed professionally somewhere on the planet virtually every hour of the day. 

The company’s inaugural production, Beauty and the Beast, opened in 1994. Itplayed a remarkable 13 year run on Broadway and has been produced in 28 countries worldwide. In November 1997, Disney opened The Lion King, which received six 1998 Tony® Awards including Best Musical and is now the highest grossing show in Broadway history.  In its 17th smash year, it has welcomed over 70 million visitors worldwide to date.  The Lion King can also currently be seen on tour across North America, the U.K., and Japan, and in London’s West End, Hamburg, Tokyo, Madrid, Sao Paulo, and Sydney, Australia, a total of ten concurrent productions worldwide.

Elton John and Tim Rice’s Aida opened on Broadway next, winning four 2000 Tony Awards, and spawning productions around the world.  Mary Poppins, a co-production with Cameron Mackintosh, opened in London in 2004 and established itself as one of the biggest stage musical successes to emerge in recent years, launching seven productions on three continents. Following a six year Tony-winning Broadway run, the title is now being licensed worldwide to professional theatres.

Tarzan®, which opened on Broadway in 2006, is now an international hit with an award-winning production in its 6th year in Germany.  In January 2008, The Little Mermaid opened on Broadway and was the #1-selling new musical of that year.  Its success continues with new productions in Russia and Japan.

Disney Theatrical Productions opened two critically acclaimed productions on Broadway in 2012, receiving seven Tony Awards between them: Newsies, in its second year at the Nederlander Theatre, and Peter and the Starcatcher, which enjoyed a two year New York run.

Other successful stage musical ventures have included King David in concert, the national tour of On The Record, several touring versions of Disney’s High School Musical, Der Glöckner Von Notre Dame in Berlin.  DTP has collaborated with the country’s leading regional theatres to develop new stage titles including Mary Zimmerman’s adaptation of The Jungle Book and The Hunchback of Notre Dame

Its new musical, Aladdin, opens on Broadway this spring.

Sonia Friedman Productions is a West End and Broadway production company responsible for some of the most successful theatre productions in London and on Broadway over the past few years. Since 1990, Sonia has developed, initiated and produced over 130 new productions and has won numerous Olivier and Tony Awards.

Recent West End and Broadway productions include the UK premiere of The Book of Mormon,Ghosts, Mojo, ChimericaTwelfth Night and Richard IIIThe Sunshine BoysMerrily We Roll AlongOld TimesJerusalemBetrayalMuch Ado About NothingThe MountaintopLegally Blonde – the MusicalThe Children’s HourLa BêteNice Work If You Can Get ItA Chorus of Disapproval, Hay FeverAbsent FriendsMaster ClassTop GirlsArcadiaClybourne Park, All My SonsPrivate LivesA Flea in Her EarA View From the BridgeLa Cage aux FollesThe Norman ConquestsA Little Night MusicOthelloDancing at LughnasaBoeing-BoeingNo Man’s LandThe SeagullMaria Friedman: Re-arrangedUnder the Blue SkyThat FaceDealer’s ChoiceHerge’s Adventures of TintinRock ‘n’ RollIn CelebrationThe Dumb WaiterDonkeys’ YearsLove SongFaith HealerThe Woman in WhiteCelebrationShoot the Crow, Otherwise EngagedAs You Like ItThe Home Place, Whose Life Is It Anyway?, By the Bog of Cats, Guantanamo: ‘Honor Bound to Defend Freedom’, EndgameJumpersSee You Next TuesdayHitchcock BlondeAbsolutely! Perhaps, Sexual Perversity in ChicagoRagtimeMacbethA Day in the Death of Joe EggAfterplayUp for GrabsOn an Average DayNoises OffA Servant to Two MastersPort AuthoritySpoonface Steinberg and Speed-the-Plow.

Prior to forming SFP, Sonia spent three years as the producer for the Ambassador Theatre Group. Before joining ATG, she was the producer and co-founder of Out of Joint, now one of Britain’s leading theatre companies. From 1989 to 1993, Sonia was a producer at the National Theatre, specialising in touring productions and theatre for young people. Sonia Friedman Productions is a subsidiary of the Ambassador Theatre Group. For the full list of SFP’s theatre credits, please visit: www.soniafriedman.com

 

Andrew C. McGibbon

 

Andrew C. McGibbon has spent the past thirty years working in live theatre as a stage manager, general manager, producer and leader in the convergence of Broadway and online.

Mr. McGibbon worked as a stage manager and general manager for ten years. In 1994 he created a website devoted to live theatre, BroadwayWorld-Wide.com. The site was subsequently bought by, and became Playbill.com. He continued to manage the site for Playbill for four years. In 2000 he became the website manager for TonyAwards.com. With the 2008-09 season he finished his ninth year on the show. He has also worked as a webmaster for the Broadway League and Jazz at Lincoln Center. He is presently the Director of Digital Media for the New Jersey Performing Arts Center.

Mr. McGibbon is a member of the American Theatre Critics Association, the Independent Theatre Bloggers Association, AEA and AFTRA.

In addition to his work in the theatrical industry, Mr. McGibbon is also a partner in Simple Solutions Distributing, a manufacturer of filtration equipment for the waste-water industry.

Photo: Elizabeth Leitzell

 

Website: www.facebook.com/andrewmcgibbon