Veteran performer Peter Bowles has left the new West End comedy Stop!… The Play just weeks before its first performance at the Trafalgar Studio 2.
Bowles, best known for TV comedies To The Manor Born and Perfect Scoundrels, left the show about a theatrical production that goes horribly wrong as rehearsals were about to begin.
He will be replaced by stage and screen veteran James Woolley.
Speaking about the situation, producer Timothy Beckmann said: “It has been a bit of a nightmare… but just the sort of calamitous event that occurs in each scene of our play! Mr Bowles had a last-minute change of heart and we have to respect his decision.”
Stop!… The Play begins its run at the Trafalgar Studio 2 on 2 June.
Written by David Spicer, Stop!… The Play is the tale of an ill-fated production, following it on its journey from dull kitchen sink drama in rehearsals to sexual pseudo-psycho drama by the time it hits the most chaotic of first nights.
Woolley joins a cast that also includes Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Adam Riches, Hollyoaks’ Tosin Cole, Hatty Preston, Hannah Stokely, Charlie Cameron and Ben Starr.
Stop!… The Play opens at the Trafalgar Studio 2 following the run of current hit Bomber’s Moon. The tale of an emerging friendship between a former RAF gunner and his new care worker runs until 23 May.