Roger Allam is to make his debut on the stage of Shakespeare’s Globe this summer, when he takes on the role of Falstaff in the Dominic Dromgoole-directed productions, Henry IV Part I and Henry IV Part II.
Allam is joined in the productions by Oliver Cotton, who takes the title role, and the previously announced Paul Rider, Jade Williams, Sean Kearns, Christopher Godwin, Jamie Parker and William Gaunt.
A Laurence Olivier Award-winning performer, Allam was last seen in London wearing sequins and high heels as he played cross-dressing cabaret singer Zaza/Albin in the much-acclaimed production of La Cage Aux Folles. Having spent much of his career working with companies including the National Theatre and Royal Shakespeare Company, the hugely versatile actor’s credits range from Les Misérables to the National Theatre production of Democracy and the hit comic revival Boeing Boeing. On screen his credits include The Thick Of It, Ashes To Ashes and The Queen.
Cotton has also worked extensively on the London stage, appearing in productions including The Royal Hunt Of The Sun, Rosencratz And Guildenstern Are Dead and Life X 3 at the National Theatre. His debut play, Wet Weather Cover, was recently staged at the King’s Head theatre.
Shakespeare’s pair of history plays tell of the rise of Prince Hal, played by original History Boy Parker, from the youthful drinking chum of the rogue knight Falstaff to the man who would be Henry V. Dromgoole’s production will use Renaissance staging and costume to tell the tale.
Henry IV Part I and Part II form part of Shakespeare’s Globe’s 2010 season of Kings and Rogues, which also includes Macbeth, Henry VIII, The Merry Wives Of Windsor and new plays Anne Boleyn and Bedlam.