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Tom Courtenay back in West End


Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

IRISHMAN Brian Friel's latest play, The Home Place, will have its British premiere on May 25, 2005 (previews from May 7) at London's Comedy Theatre, where it's initially booking until August 27, 2005.

Set in 1878, a time of unrest prior to Home Rule, it will star Tom Courtenay (pictured) as widower Christopher Gore, who shares his home - The Lodge in Ballybeg - with his son David and the woman they both love, their housekeeper Margaret. However, the arrival of Christopher's English cousin soon threatens their seemingly peaceful existence.

The Home Place premiered in February this year at the Gate Theatre in Dublin, where it continued for a limited 8 week season.

Friel's other works include Dancing at Lughnasa, Faith Healer, Father and Sons, Translations, Volunteers and Philadelphia, Here I Come!

Afterplay, his most recent (2002) West End offering which starred Penelope Wilton and John Hurt, also transferred from Dublin's Gate Theatre.

Courtenay has enjoyed a long and distinguished career, both on stage and screen, but is probably best-known for his working class film roles of the 1960's - The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner, Doctor Zhivago and of course, Billy Liar which he reprised on stage.

Other more recent film credits include Nicholas Nickleby, Last Orders and Whatever Happened to Harold Smith?

His stage credits are equally impressive and include The Dresser (also on film) and the original West End cast of Art - both alongside his friend Albert Finney. His most recent West End appearance was in the Comedy Theatre's 2003 production of Pretending to Be Me, a one-hander about poet Philip Larkin.

Although full casting for the London production has still to be confirmed, the majority of the Dublin company are expected to reprise their roles. They include Hugh O'Conor (David), Derbhle Crotty (Margaret) and Nick Dunning (English cousin).

Whose Life Is It Anyway? starring Sex and the City's Kim Cattrall, is currently playing at the comedy Theatre - until April 30, 2005.

Buy tickets now!

 

 

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