The Almeida theatre has today announced casting for Richard Eyre’s forthcoming production of Ghosts, which will see Lesley Manville make her debut at the Islington venue, as well as details for musical thriller American Psycho, which opens later in the year.
Stage and screen actress Manville will take on the role of Helene Alving in Henrik Ibsen’s Ghosts (26 September to 23 November), which tells the story of a woman who has spent her life suspended in an emotional void after the death of her cruel but outwardly charming husband, and will be joined in the production by Will Keen and Jack Lowden.
Last seen on the London stage in Grief at the National Theatre, Manville’s theatre credits also include Her Naked Skin, Pillars Of The Community, The Alchemist and His Dark Materials at the South Bank venue, Six Degrees Of Separation and All About My Mother at the Old Vic theatre, and Top Girls at the Royal Court theatre. On screen her numerous credits include Mike Leigh’s Another Year, All Or Nothing and Secret And Lies.
Keen, who has just finished performing alongside Rowan Atkinson in Quartermaine’s Terms at the Wyndham’s theatre, returns to the Almeida following performances in Tom And Vic and Five Gold Rings, while elsewhere he has appeared in Huis Clos at the Trafalgar Studios, Kiss Of The Spiderwoman at the Donmar Warehouse and The Arsonist at the Royal Court.
Star of Olympic hit Chariots Of Fire, Lowden, whose stage credits also include Olivier Award-winning drama Black Watch at the Barbican theatre, was recently seen on screen alongside this year’s Olivier Awards host Sheridan Smith in ITV’s Mrs Biggs.
Today’s announcement of the trio’s upcoming appearances at the Almeida come with news about the world premiere of American Psycho, which will be directed by the venue’s Artistic Director Designate Rupert Goold.
A co-production with Headlong, American Psycho will play from 3 December (press night 12 December) to 25 January and tells the story of Patrick Bateman, a young man living the high life in 1980s Manhattan, who buys designer clothes, dines at exclusive restaurants and parties at the hottest clubs, while privately indulging in another kind of transgression that causes the people around him to disappear.
Based on the novel by Bret Easton Ellis with a book by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and music and lyrics by Duncan Sheik, American Psycho features choreography by Lynne Page and designs by Olivier Award winner Es Devlin.
Also announced today is the return of the Almeida Festival. Taking place from 9 July to 9 August, this year’s festival will feature a packed programme of fresh collaborations and award-winning artists including new works from Tim Crouch & a smith, Bryony Kimmings, Made In China, Dirty Protest, The Young Friends Of The Almeida and Belarus Free Theatre, new plays by Roz Wyllie and Alice Birch, and a site-specific dance theatre piece by Dante Or Die.
The new season of work will begin following current hit Before The Party starring Olivier Award-winner Michelle Terry, which ends its run on 11 May, and another Headlong co-production, Lucy Kirkwood’s Chimerica, which plays from 17 May to 29 June.