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Cast returns for Red Velvet

Published 12 December 2013

Adrian Lester and the majority of the cast of hit Tricycle theatre show Red Velvet will return when the production is revived at the Kilburn venue early next year.

The former Hustle star will be joined by previous Red Velvet colleagues Simon Chandler, Rachel Finnegan, Natasha Gordon, Charlotte Lucas and Eugene O’Hare when the drama, written by Lester’s wife Lolita Chakrabarti, opens at the Tricycle on 23 January.

Of the original cast only Ryan Kiggell and Ferdinand Kingsley will not return. They are replaced by recent LAMDA graduate Nic Jackman and Royal Shakespeare Company regular Oliver Ryan.

Red Velvet, which was the first production staged by Indhu Rubasingham as Artistic Director of the Tricycle, tells the true story of black American actor Ira Aldridge who, in 1833, was asked to step into the shoes of Edmund Kean and play Othello at the Theatre Royal Covent Garden when the greatest actor of his generation collapsed on stage. With the public rioting in the streets about the abolition of slavery, this was a turbulent time for Aldridge to take to the biggest of stages.

After Red Velvet premiered at the Tricycle in autumn 2012, Chakrabarti went on to win Evening Standard and Critics’ Circle Awards for Most Promising Playwright while Lester won the Critics’ Circle Award for Best Actor.

Following its Kilburn revival, which concludes on 15 March, Red Velvet will transfer to New York’s St Ann’s Warehouse where it will have its US premiere.

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