Director Michael Grandage has surrounded Daniel Radcliffe by a cast with a strong Irish connection as the Harry Potter star prepares to return to the London stage in The Cripple Of Inishmaan.
Radcliffe, who told director Grandage he would like to explore his Irish heritage when they were discussing possible projects, will play Cripple Billy in the first major London revival of Martin McDonagh’s dark comedy since it was premiered at the National Theatre in 1996.
He will be joined by Ingrid Craigie, Pádraic Delaney, Sarah Greene, Gillian Hanna, Gary Lilburn, Conor MacNeill, Pat Shortt and June Watson. Between them the cast boasts credits across a host of Ireland’s major theatres, including Abbey theatre, Gate theatre, Cork Opera House, Gaiety theatre, Druid theatre company and Lyric Belfast.
Of the cast members most recently seen in London, Hanna appeared in Chalet Lines at the Bush theatre, Liburn appeared in Calendar Girls at the Noël Coward theatre and Watson can currently be seen in Before The Party at the Almeida theatre.
The Cripple Of Inishmaan, which is part of the Aran Islands Trilogy with The Lieutenant Of Inishmore and The Banshees Of Inisheer, is set on a remote Irish island where word goes around that a Hollywood film is being made on a neighbouring island. Cripple Billy wants to be in the film more than anyone else, if only to break the tedium of his daily life.
The production, the third in the Michael Grandage Company’s five-show season at the Noël Coward theatre, opens in June following the run of current hit Peter And Alice, which stars Dame Judi Dench and Ben Whishaw.