It’s Friday! Best day of the week! (After Saturday, anyway.) Here’s your weekly round-up of all the latest and greatest happenings in the world of London theatre.
Following last week’s announcement that EastEnders star David Witts will be joining the production, Wicked announces new casting for several other roles. Chris Jarman – whom you may have seen in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child as the Sorting Hat and everyone’s favorite giant, Hagrid (yes, we know he’s really a half-giant) – will step into the role of Doctor Dillamond. And Rosa O’Reilly, who has placed Nessarose at several performances, will step into the role full time. Wicked‘s new cast members take their places starting 23 July.
Knights of the round table… assemble! Andy Moss joins the cast of Jennifer Marsden’s new rock musical Knights of the Rose, playing Sir Gawain. Previously, he’s been best known for his role as Rhys Ashworth in Hollyoaks. (Yikes, is Hollyoaks taking over Broadway? First Carly Stenson, now Andy Moss?) Says Moss: “I have always had a passion for both rock music and theatre, and where better to bring the two together than in this high-voltage, West End stage production?”
Matthew Lopez’s two-parter The Inheritance will transfer to the West End from the Young Vic, playing the Noel Coward Theatre starting 21 September. Inspired by E.M. Forster’s classic novel Howards End, the drama enjoyed a sold out run at the Young Vic, and has been compared to Angels in America. At a running time of about seven hours, The Inheritance is definitely up there with Angels when it comes to length. But we hear it’s set to be trimmed down for its West End run.
The Emilio and Gloria Estefan musical On Your Feet will get its London premiere next summer at the Coliseum. On Your Feet tells the true story of the two Latin musicians, featuring songs like “Conga” and “Rhythm is Gonna Get You.”
In the world of Shakespeare, Michelle Terry’s double bill of Hamlet and As You Like It opened at the Globe this week. Both productions feature what critics are calling “post-gender” casting. Terry herself plays Hamlet, with male actor Shubham Saraf as Ophelia. In As You Like It, Jack Laskey plays Rosalind (a female character who at the height of the play’s gender confusion masquerades as a man imitating a woman). Critics seem divided on what to make of both plays, with some lauding As You Like It to the skies but complaining that Hamlet falls a bit flat. Others seem to think Terry’s staging is a worthwhile experiment but not exactly an all around success.