Theatre Round-up:

Open Court at the Royal CourtThe Royal Court is taken over by writers in Vicki Featherstone’s opening season, as a weekly rep of new plays move into the theatre downstairs. Natasha Gordon, Ferdy Roberts and Angela Terence will all join the Open Court ensemble for its summer season of plays. Nitin Kundra starts rehearsals for The Royal Exchange/Told By an Idiot co production of Too Clever By Half directed by Paul Hunter for the main house this summer whilst Gavin Spokes plays Oliver Hardy in The Watermill’s Laurel & Hardy directed by Paul Foster.  Vincenzo Nicoli heads to the Edinburgh Festival where he plays Bogs Diamond in Lucy Pittman’s Wallace’ s revival of Shawshank Redemption alongside Omid Djalili.

Openings include Sara Powell in Disgraced at The Bush, Geraldine Alexander in Strange Interlude at The National, Molly Logan in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at The Globe and Jess Murphy in Macbeth also at The Globe. Amy Cudden continues her West End run in One Man 2 Guvnors as does Derek Hutchinson in Cocktail Sticks which completes its run.

Regulars:

Daniel Coonan in EastendersEastenders has announced the planned arrival of a new bad boy in Walford! Congratulations to Daniel Coonan who has been confirmed in the role of Carl Parker and will land in Albert Square early summer. Daniel was last seen in BBC’s May Day as well as recently working with Mike Leigh on his stage revival of Ecstacy. Vincenzo Nicoli, meanwhile, joins Mr Selfridge for Series 2 of the popular ITV drama set in and around the world famous department store. Playing the regular new character of Uncle Giovanni, the first block will be directed by Anthony Byrne and shoots this month. Also returning, shooting in London and LA from May is Episodes, the Hatrick/HBO co production which sees Joseph May reprise his role as Andy Button for Season 3.

Spring Watch

Max Fowler in MayDay
Max Fowler in Mayday ©BBC

A young girl disappears from an idyllic community and so begins Mayday, the BBC’s absorbing new five part drama beginning Sunday 3 March and continuing.  Max Fowler plays the juvenile lead Linus with Daniel Coonan as PC Simmons. Also starting this week on the History Channel is the epic miniseries The Bible featuring Ken Bones as Ira. Coming soon to Fox UK, also with Ken Bones, is Da Vinci’s Demons which reveals the secret history of Leonardo Da Vinci. Over on ITV, bestselling novel Ice Cream Girls has been adapted and will screen this Spring with Sara Powell in the role of Fez. Also on ITV, set against the backdrop of the London Blitz, Daniel Rabin will be appearing as Granger in Murder on the Home Front. We’re also looking forward to Channel 4’s new drama Run in which Jay Simpson and Vincenzo Nicoli will appear. This fast-paced contemporary narrative is directed by Bafta winning Charles Martin.

Comedy Bits

Lisa Palfrey will be joining Christopher Guest’s regular ensemble for his new HBO/BBC show Family Tree.

Naomi Bentley joins the cast of  the popular BBC sit-com Miranda for series 3 whilst Ken Bones films The Worlds End a comedy feature from Working Title.

Roger Sloman has just shot one of Sky’s Little Crackers shorts playing Katy Brand’s Grandfather and Vincenzo Nicoli currently features in rom- com The Knot on general release in cinemas now.

Fresh Meat also returns to Channel 4  in which Suzanne Burden will be appearing.

Autumn Theatre Preview:

Roger Sloman returns to The National in Pinero’s The Magistrate directed by Timothy Sheader. Jess Murphy returns too, currently rehearsing for Alan Bennett’s new play People which Nick Hytner directs.  Gavin Spokes, meanwhile,  joins the National’s highly successful West End run of One Man 2 Guvnors at The Haymarket.

Also in London, Vincenzo Nicoli opens in a new production of Revenger’s Tragedy at Hoxton Hall with Suba Das directing and Will Mannering premieres in a new play You Can Still Make A Killing which Matthew Dunster directs at Southwark Playhouse. Hermione Gulliford appears in the UK premiere of Howard Barker’s Lot and His God directed by Robyn Winfied-Smith at The Print Room in Notting Hill.

“The Welsh Boy” ©Jane Hobson

Geraldine Alexander has just opened in The Welsh Boy at Bath, Ustinov Studio whilst Chris Ryman performs in Greyscale’s What The Animals Say, which arrives London in October. Also opening in October is Scenes From An Execution with Jay Simpson and Robert Hands at The National plus Natasha Gordon in The Tricycle’s Red Velvet.

Summer Shoots

Michelle Bonnard joins the cast of The Fear, World Productions dark new thriller set in underworld Brighton. She will be playing the regular role of DS Janice Goodchild with Michael Samuels directing.
Naomi Bentley meanwhile shoots The Poison Tree – a 2 part drama for ITV based on the book by Erin Kelly with Marek Losey directing. Benjamin Davies will be filming The Fast and the Furious for Universal this summer, the sixth film in Vin Diesel’s popular action franchise with Justin Lin directing. Jay Simpson and Vincenzo Nicoli film Run described as a brilliantly dark new 5 part drama for Channel 4 helmed by Charles Palmer whilst Graham Turner films a guest role in the ever popular Dr Who.