Noël & Gertie - Cockpit Theatre
Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle
THE CREATIVE team behind the acclaimed production of Parade at Southwark Playhouse reunites for a major revival of Noël & Gertie, which originally ran in the West End for nine years.
An entertainment devised by Sheridan Morley, with the words and music of Noël Coward, the new production runs at the Cockpit Theatre from Tuesday, September 27 to Saturday, October 22, 2011.
Described as a witty and moving show, Noël & Gertie is affectionately crafted from diaries and letters between Coward and his stage partner, Gertrude Lawrence, telling the story of the professional and personal relationship between two of this century’s greatest stage personalities.
Although they only appeared in two productions together, Private Lives and Tonight at 8.30, Coward and Lawrence epitomised an era of high style and elegance. Accordingly, the songs, sketches and snippets of scenes pieced together in Noël & Gertie accurately portray this remarkable duo and the era they helped to define.
Produced by Danielle Tarento, Noël & Gertie stars Helena Blackman and Ben Stock, and is directed by Thom Southerland.
Helena Blackman, a runner up in TV’s How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?, was nominated for a TMA Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance as Nellie Forbush in the UK tour of South Pacific. She also starred as Helen Fogel in the West End premiere of Stephen Sondheim’s Saturday Night at Jermyn Street Theatre.
Ben Stock‘s West End credits include Grease (as Eugene), Over My Shoulder – The Jessie Matthew Story and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang! On tour, he played Lumiere in Disney’s Beauty And The Beast.
Thom Southerland, who recently directed the acclaimed revival of Parade at Southwark Playhouse, was named Best Director at the 2011 Off West End Theatre Awards for Me and Juliet (Finborough Theatre). His other directing credits include the European premiere of I Sing!, Divorce Me, Darling!, Annie Get Your Gun, The Pajama Game and sold-out all-male adaptations of Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore and The Mikado (all at the Union Theatre).
As well as Parade, Danielle Tarento produced the sold-out Company at Southwark Playhouse. She is co-founder of the Menier Chocolate Factory and co-produced all in-house shows from 2004 to 2006, including Sunday In The Park With George, which received a West End transfer and five Olivier Awards.
Also designed by Thom Southerland, Noël & Gertie has choreography by Stewart Nicholls, musical supervision by Michael Bradley and lighting design by Howard Hudson.
Tickets: £17, £14 concessions (inclusive of all booking fees) – available from the box office on 020 7258 2920.
Times: Tuesday – Saturday at 7.30pm, Saturday matinee at 4pm, Sunday matinee at 5pm.
Cockpit Theatre, Gateforth Street, Marylebone, London, NW8 8EH