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The Bodyguard - Knight and Gemmill join cast

Beverley Knight and Tristan Gemmill

Casting news

IN SEPTEMBER this year, multi award-winning recording artist Beverley Knight will join the cast of the hit West End musical, The Bodyguard, to play the leading role of Oscar-nominated superstar Rachel Marron.

Also joining the cast will be Tristan Gemmill who will play Rachel’s bodyguard, Frank Farmer.

Thea Sharrock’s production, which opened at the Adelphi Theatre in December 2012, has once again extended its booking period – this time until March 8, 2014.

Queen of British Soul Beverley Knight is a singer, songwriter and record producer who has been one of the UK’s most consistent artists since the release of her debut album in 1995. To date, she has won three MOBO Awards, an Outstanding Achievement Award at the Urban Music Awards, been three times nominated for Best Female at the Brit Awards and twice nominated for the prestigious Mercury Music Prize.

Knight has presented four series of Radio 2 show Beverley’s Gospel Nights and appeared in two series of hit BBC1 show Just The Two Of Us as well as appearing on stage with the likes of Prince, Stevie Wonder and Take That. Last summer, she wowed a viewing audience of one billion with a rendition of the song I Am What I Am at the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

Knight, who in 2007 was awarded an MBE for her services to music and charity, is currently working on her eighth studio album.

On joining the West End production, she said: “I am so excited about playing Rachel Marron on stage in The Bodyguard. To be making my West End theatre debut playing such an iconic role is both somewhat challenging and highly exhilarating and it will be nothing but a privilege to perform the best of Whitney Houston’s extraordinary catalogue each night on stage at the Adelphi Theatre.

“After seeing the show as a member of the audience I thought how brilliant it would be to join such a fantastic company on stage as they performed one iconic song after another and I couldn’t be happier that this is now to become a reality. I first heard Whitney’s music when she made her debut and exploded onto the scene with Saving All My Love For You when I was 13 years old. I have been mesmerised ever since.

“To be working with a creative team led by director Thea Sharrock, designer Tim Hatley, orchestrator Chris Egan and musical supervisor Mike Dixon, as well as Tristan and all the cast and crew, is going to be really exciting. I can’t wait to begin!”

Although Tristan Gemmill is best known for playing Dr Adam Trueman in Casualty, BBC’s long-running medical drama series , he has also appeared on television in London’s Burning, Distant Shores, Strictly Confidential and Cape Wrath. On the big screen, he can be seen in the newly-released British independent film Flying Blind starring Helen McCrory and later this year in the fantasy adventure film Mariah Mundi and the Midas Box with Michael Sheen and Sam Neill.

His earlier theatre credits include A Street Car Named Desire (Theatre Clwyd), Dangerous Corner (Chichester Festival Theatre), Design For Living (English Touring Theatre) and Henry V (Royal Shakespeare Company).

Speaking about his role in The Bodyguard, Gemmill said:

“It’s a real thrill for me to be returning to the West End in Thea Sharrock’s production of The Bodyguard. It’s going to be a huge challenge but one I can’t wait to get started on. Being responsible for protecting my co-star, the phenomenally talented Beverley Knight and to hear her performing Whitney Houston’s timeless classics each night, will be something very special and I’m very much looking forward to getting on board and starting rehearsals with this incredible company.”

Joining Knight and Gemmill in the cast of The Bodyguard will be Debbie Kurup (continuing in the role of Nicki Marron), Richard Lloyd King (Bill Devaney), Stephen Marcus (Tony), Dominic Taylor (Sy Spector), Michael Rouse (Stalker) and Stuart Reid (Ray Court).

Ensemble members are Gareth Andrews, Kimball Armes, Christopher Birch, Hannah Fairclough, Robert Gill, Nicky Griffiths, Ben Harrold, Jamie Hughes-Ward, Alex Jackson, Genesis Lynea, Fergal McGoff, Sara Morley, Joelle Moses, David O’Mahoney, Stuart Rogers, Kyle Seeley, Danielle Steers, Katy Stredder and Christopher Terry. The young actors who will alternate the role of Rachel Marron’s young son Fletcher will be announced shortly.

Based on Lawrence Kasdan’s 1992 Warner Bros. film, The Bodyguard is the story of former Secret Service agent turned bodyguard, Frank Farmer, who is hired to protect superstar Rachel Marron from an unknown stalker. Each expects to be in charge; what they don’t expect is to fall in love.

A romantic thriller, The Bodyguard features a multitude of Whitney Houston’s greatest hits including Queen of the Night, So Emotional, One Moment in Time, Saving All My Love, I’m Your Baby Tonight, Run to You, I Have Nothing, I Wanna Dance With Somebody and, of course, I Will Always Love You.

Read more about The Bodyguard.