Downton Abbey’s Michael Cochrane will lead the cast of Wonderland, Beth Steel’s miners’ strike drama that plays at the Hampstead Theatre in the 30th anniversary year of the infamous 1980s country-altering event.
Playing from 20 June at the Swiss Cottage venue, Steel’s Susan Smith Blackburn Prize finalist play will tell the story of the strike from two very different standpoints; the miners, who are fighting for their livelihood, and the Conservative government, who are fighting equally hard for its controversial vision of the future of Britain.
Cochrane, who returns to the stage following the Tricycle Theatre’s The Bomb: A Partial History, will lead the Government camp as Ian MacGregor, Chairman of the Coal Board.
Joining him in the Westminster line-up are Andrew Havill, who returns to the venue following last year’s Drawing The Line, EastEnders’ Paul Cawley, RSC regular Andrew Readman and Dugald Bruce-Lockhart, who reunites with Wonderland’s director Edward Hall following numerous productions in Hall’s all-male Shakespeare theatre company Propellor.
In the miners’ camp are a host of theatre regulars including One Man, Two Guvnors’ Nigel Betts, Paul Brennen (Three Sisters, Lyric Hammersmith), Gunnar Cauthery, who can currently be seen in Privacy at the Donmar Warehouse, Paul Rattray (Three Sisters, Young Vic) and Simon Slater, who last appeared on stage in Hall’s previous Hampstead hit Chariots Of Fire.
Completing the cast are Ben-Ryan Davies and David Moorst, who will make their London stage debuts as two young lads about to discover exactly what it is like to be a miner.
Wonderland will play at the Hampstead Theatre following Hall’s hugely successful hit Sunny Afternoon. Telling the story of The Kinks, the new musical, which features an exhilarating line-up of the band’s iconic numbers and collected a host of glowing reviews when it opened last month, will come to the end of its sell-out run on 24 May.