Tuesday, 23 December 2014

FIRST LOOK: City of Angels at the Donmar Warehouse

Samantha Barks, Rosalie Craig and Hadley Fraser are Katherine Kelly, Tam Mutu, Peter Polycarpou and Rebecca Trehearn star in The Donmar Warehouse's production of City of Angels. 

They are joined by Nick Cavaliere, Cameron Cuffe, Marc Elliott, Adam Fogerty, Kadiff Kirwan, Sandra Marvin, Mark Penfold, Jennifer Saayeng, Jo Servi and Tim Walton.

Two decades after its London premiere, Artistic Director Josie Rourke revives one of the acknowledged greats of twentieth century musical theatre.

Hollywood comes calling for a New York novelist. The offer is too good to refuse: adapt the private detective protagonist of his books into a big-screen hero. The siren song of Los Angeles is a dangerous temptation and while his movie plays out in black and white, his new life is all-too colourful.

With a sensational jazz score by Cy Coleman, sizzling lyrics from David Zippel and book by acclaimed comic screenwriter Larry Gelbart (M*A*S*H, Tootsie), City of Angels is a witty and glorious celebration of film noir. 

It runs from Friday 5 December 2014 – Saturday 7 February 2015. 

Josie Rourke (Director) is Artistic Director of the Donmar Warehouse where she has directed The Recruiting Officer, The Physicists, Berenice, The Weir (which transferred to Wyndham’s Theatre), Coriolanus (which was broadcast to cinemas around the world in partnership with National Theatre Live) and James Graham’s new play Privacy. In 2013 she directed The Machine, a new play by Matt Charman, as part of the Manchester International Festival, which also played at Park Avenue Armory, New York. Rourke trained at the Donmar, under Sam Mendes, through the theatre’s annual Resident Assistant Director Scheme. Prior to the Donmar, she was Artistic Director at the Bush Theatre, London, from 2007 to 2011. Her 2010 production of Men Should Weep by Ena Lamont Stewart ran in the Lyttelton at the National Theatre. In 2011 her production of Much Ado About Nothing, starring David Tennant and Catherine Tate, ran in the West End at Wyndham’s Theatre and received an Olivier Award nomination for Best Revival.

Samantha Barks (playing Avril/Mallory) is making her Donmar debut in City of Angels. Theatre credits include Chicago (Hollywood Bowl), Oliver! (UK Tour), Cabaret (Birmingham Repertory Theatre) and Les Misérables (Queen’s Theatre) as Éponine, a role which Barks reprised in Tom Hooper’s acclaimed film adaptation. Other film credits include The Devil’s Harvest, Dracula Untold and The Christmas Candle.

Nick Cavaliere (playing Sonny) previously starred as Big Jule in the Donmar’s production of Guys and Dolls at the Piccadilly Theatre. Other theatre credits include One Man, Two Guvnors (National Theatre), Zorro (West End), Sleeping Beauty (The Young Vic, Barbican and on Broadway), The Taming of the Shrew (Manchester Royal Exchange), Antony & Cleopatra and The Relapse (RSC). Film and television credits include Doctors, Devil’s Playground, Gulliver’s Travels, Doc Martin, Last Chance Harvey, The Last Detective and Coronation Street.

Rosalie Craig (playing Gabby/Bobbi) makes her Donmar debut in City of Angels. Her recent performance as Princess Althea in The Light Princess at the National Theatre earned her the Evening Standard Theatre Award for Best Musical Performance, as well as an Olivier Award nomination. She played the title role in Miss Julie and also appeared in Black Comedy at Chichester Festival Theatre this summer. Previous theatre credits include Macbeth (Manchester International Festival 2013), Table (National Theatre), Finding Neverland (Leicester Curve), Ragtime (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre) and Company (Sheffield Crucible). Her television credits include Spooks, Miranda and My Family and Other Animals.

Cameron Cuffe (playing Peter Kingsley) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. Theatre credits include the forthcoming The Vertical Hour (Park Theatre) and Pains of Youth, Love’s Labour’s Lost, and The Rover (all while training at The Lir Academy, Dublin).

Marc Elliott (playing Pancho Vargas/Lieutenant Munoz) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. Elliott’s theatre credits include Urinetown (Apollo Theatre and St James Theatre), Tape (Trafalgar Studios), The History Boys (National Theatre), Bells and Chaos (Birmingham Repertory Theatre), The Maids (Lyric Hammersmith) and Lord of the Flies, The Winter’s Tale, Macbeth and Julius Caesar (RSC). Television credits include Syed Masood in EastEnders, Lewis, Midsomer Murders, The Invisibles, MI High and Mile High. 

Adam Fogerty (playing Big Six) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. Previous theatre credits include Manchester Sound: The Massacre (Liberty Theatre Company, Manchester), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Northern Broadsides) and Bouncers (Hull Truck). Snatch, Mean Machine, Greenfingers
and Stardust.

Hadley Fraser (playing Stine) returns to the Donmar stage having played Aufidius in Rourke’s production of Coriolanus. That followed his appearance in The Machine, also directed by Rourke, for the Donmar co-production with the Manchester International Festival and Park Avenue Armory, New York. He has played Marius and, later, Javert in the West End production of Les Misérables and appeared in Tom Hooper’s acclaimed film adaptation. In 2012, Fraser played Raoul in the 25th Anniversary Concert of The Phantom of the Opera, which was broadcast around the world. Other theatre credits include The Pajama Game (Chichester Festival Theatre), The Fantasticks (Duchess Theatre) and Assassins (Sheffield Crucible). Together with Ramin Karimloo, he writes, records and performs music as SHEYTOONS and recently released his first solo recording Just Let Go. Fraser is a patron of the Performance Preparation Academy in Guildford and is an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music.

Katherine Kelly (playing Carla/Alaura) makes her Donmar debut in City of Angels. Kelly is best known as Becky on Coronation Street, having won and been nominated for multiple accolades for the role including the National Television Award for Most Popular Serial Drama Performance, the TRIC Award for TV Personality and the British Soap Award for Best Actress, Best Comedy Performance and Best On-Screen Partnership. Additional television credits include Mr Selfridge, The Secret River, Guilty, The Last Witch, The Best Possible Taste and Life on Mars. Theatre includes She Stoops to Conquer (National Theatre), Visable (Soho Theatre), Tamar’s Revenge and House of Desires (RSC), Othello (Manchester Royal Exchange) and The Accrington Pals (Chichester Festival Theatre).

Kadiff Kirwan (playing Angel City Four) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. Theatre credits include Home (National Theatre), Jesus Christ Superstar (UK and Australian Tour) and Sister Act (UK Tour). Kirwan’s television credits include Call the Midwife and Crims.

Sandra Marvin (playing Angel City Four) makes her Donmar debut in City of Angels. Her theatre credits include Kate Bush: Before the Dawn (Eventim Apollo), Chicago (Leicester Curve), Hairspray (Shaftesbury Theatre andUK and Ireland Tour), Ragtime, A Fairytale of New York and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Cool Hand Luke (Aldwych Theatre) and A Rake’s Progress (Royal Opera House).

Tam Mutu (playing Stone) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. Mutu has an extensive list of theatre credits including Les Misérables (Queen’s Theatre), Love Never Dies (Adelphi Theatre), Orange Peel (Royal Court), Royal Hunt of the Sun and Love’s Labour’s Lost (National Theatre), East (Leicester Haymarket), King Lear and Romeo and Juliet (RSC), and As You Like It (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre). Television credits include Waking the Dead and Footballer’s Wives.ision credits include Waking the Dead and Footballer’s Wives.

Mark Penfold (playing Luther Kingsley) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. His theatre credits include Salome (Southampton Nuffield Theatre), The Crucible (Sheffield Crucible), Justifying War (Tricycle Theatre) and has performed frequently at the Oxford Playhouse in Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, Privates on Parade and Macbeth among others. Penfold has made numerous television appearances, most recently in Downton Abbey, Silk, Call the Midwife and The Musketeers.

Peter Polycarpou (playing Buddy Fidler) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. He has had a hugely varied career spanning over 30 years in theatre, film, television and radio. Polycarpou most recently played Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls at the Chichester Festival Theatre. Other theatre credits include The Pajama Game (Shaftesbury Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre), The Magistrate (National Theatre), Sweeney Todd (Adelphi Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre) and Love Story (Duchess Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre). He has also performed in many renowned musicals in the West End including playing the title role in Phantom of the Opera, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Oklahoma!, Cats and Les Misérables, as well as creating the role of John in Miss Saigon. In television he is best known for playing Chris in the popular sit-com Birds of a Feather and his many other credits include Family Tree, Hustle and The Last Days of Lehman Brothers. His film work encompasses Evita, I Could Never Be Your Woman and De-Lovely.

Jennifer Saayeng (playing Angel City Four) makes her Donmar debut in City of Angels. Her previous theatre credits include Sister Act (Kilworth House), Zanna Don’t (Landor Theatre), The Color Purple (Menier Chocolate Factory), Ghost (Piccadilly Theatre), Hairspray (UK tour), The Great Pretenders (Upstairs at the Gatehouse) and Rent (Pleasance Theatre, Islington). Television and film credits include Prince of Persia and Britannia High.

Jo Servi (playing Angel City Four) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. His theatre credits include A Life of Galileo (Birmingham Repertory Theatre and UK tour), Ragtime and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Jersey Boys (Prince Edward Theatre), The Human Comedy (The Young Vic), The Enchanted Pig (Royal Opera House) and Cinderella (The Old Vic). Film credits include The Muppets... Again!

Rebecca Trehearn (playing Donna/Oolie) makes her Donmar debut in City of Angels. Trehearn’s theatre credits include Dogfight (Southwark Playhouse), Ghost (UK Tour and Piccadilly Theatre), Love Story (Duchess Theatre), Aspects of Love (Menier Chocolate Factory) and Dirty Dancing (Aldwych Theatre).

Tim Walton (playing Jimmy Powers) makes his Donmar debut in City of Angels. Walton’s theatre credits include Stephen Ward (Aldwych Theatre), Kiss Me Kate (The Old Vic), Matilda (Cambridge Theatre), Love Never Dies (Adelphi Theatre), Wicked (Apollo Victoria Theatre), Romeo and Juliet (Piccadilly Theatre), South Pacific (National Theatre) and Mamma Mia! (Prince Edward Theatre). 
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