Olivier Award winning actor Robert Lindsay is to return to musical theatre in 2014 to lead the cast of the UK production of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, the stage adaptation of the hit 1988 Michael Caine/Steve Martin movie.
The West End veteran will be joined in the production, which runs at the Savoy theatre from 10 March, by comedian and former One Man, Two Guvnors leading man Rufus Hound and twice Olivier nominated actress Katherine Kingsley.
Lindsay, who boasts acclaimed musical performances in shows including Me And My Girl (for which he won an Olivier Award) and Oliver!, will play sophisticated conman Lawrence Jameson in the French Riviera set musical comedy. At home in the lap of luxury among the elite, Jameson’s life starts to crumble with the arrival of the larger-than-life Freddy Benson (Hound), a conman of a very different ilk. Pitched head to head in a town that is not big enough for both of them, they each pull out all the stops as they try to win the affections of heiress Christine Colgate (Kingsley). Little do they know what they’ve let themselves in for.
Speaking about his casting Lindsay, whose screen work includes My Family, GBH and Citizen Smith, said: “I have been waiting for the right musical to cross my path and feel like I have finally found it with Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. When I met the writers, they were so excited to be re-working the show for a UK audience, especially as there is a real sense of classic English humour in this production.”
The adaptation premiered on Broadway in 2005, when the leading roles were played by John Lithgow and Norbert Leo Butz. It went on to receive 11 Tony Award nominations. Jerry Mitchell, choreographer of that original production, also directs this newly re-worked UK version, returning to the Savoy theatre where his production of Legally Blonde The Musical was such a major hit.
Mitchell commented: “With a sensational score and the incredible comic gift of Robert Lindsay, Rufus Hound and Katherine Kingsley, it will be an honour to bring this fabulous story to the West End.”
Both Hound and Kingsley, like Lindsay, have comic pedigree. Hound made his name as a comedian and TV panel show regular, appearing in series including Celebrity Juice, Argumental and Would I Lie To You. Kingsley’s previous stage work is packed with comedy. She can currently be seen in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, received an Olivier nomination for her performance as squeaky-voiced silent movie star Lina Lamont in Singin’ In The Rain and has previously been one of the four-strong cast taking on a multitude of roles in The 39 Steps.
Further casting is yet to be announced.
The arrival of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels at the Savoy theatre signals the end of Beatles concert spectacular Let It Be‘s run at the venue. No statement has been made about the future of that show.