Attenborough Will Direct When the Rain Stops Falling at the Almeida; Casting Announced

News   Attenborough Will Direct When the Rain Stops Falling at the Almeida; Casting Announced The full cast for the Almeida's European premiere of Andrew Bovell's When the Rain Stops Falling, which begins performances May 14 prior to an official opening on May 21 and a run to July 4, has been announced.

Michael Attenborough, artistic director of the theatre, will direct a cast that comprises Naomi Bentley, Simon Burke, Jonathan Cullen, Lisa Dillon, Richard Hope, Tom Mison, Phoebe Nicholls, Leah Purcell, and Sargon Yelda.

Designs are by Miriam Buether with lighting by Colin Grenfell, music by Stephen Warbeck, sound by Paul Arditti and movement by Imogen Knight.

The play, which received its world premiere at the Adelaide Festival of Arts last year and won the prestigious Louis Esson Prize for Drama in Australia, spans four generations and two continents. According to press materials, the play moves from the claustrophobia of a 1950's London flat to the windswept coast of Southern Australia and into the heart of the Australian desert. The play weaves together a series of interconnected stories, as seven people confront the mysteries of the past in order to understand their future.

Naomi Bentley was last seen at the Almeida in Out of the Fog, by Roy Williams. Her theatre credits include Burn, Chatroom and Citizenship for the National Theatre and Beautiful Thing for Sound Theatre. Her television work includes roles in "Mutual Friends" and "Ideal."

Simon Burke, who has regularly worked for Sydney Theatre Company in his native Australia, has appeared in the West End in The Sound of Music (where he recently played Captain von Trapp at the London Palladium), Out of the Blue at the Shaftesbury Theatre, The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty's Theatre and A Christmas Carol for the Royal Shakespeare Company. Jonathan Cullen was recently seen in The Stone (Royal Court), State of Emergency (Gate) and Equus (Gielgud). Other credits include Market Boy and Albert Speer (National Theatre) and regular appearances at the Royal Court and Chichester Festival Theatre.

Lisa Dillon previously appeared at the Almeida in Period of Adjustment and Hedda Gabler. Recent theatre credits include Under the Blue Sky at the Duke of York's Theatre and Present Laughter for the National Theatre; she has also played Desdemona in Othello for the Royal Shakespeare Company, and she won the Ian Charleson Award and the Critics' Circle Most Promising Newcomer Award for her performance as Hilda Wangel in The Master Builder at the Albery Theatre.

Richard Hope's extensive theatre work includes The Hour We Know Nothing of Each Other, A Prayer for Owen Meany, War and Peace, Pravda and Hamlet, all for the National Theatre, and The Street of Crocodiles and The Visit for Complicité.

Mison's theatre credits include Hedda for the Gate Theatre, The Living Unknown Soldier and Les Enfants Du Paradis for the Arcola Theatre.

Phoebe Nicholls was last at the Almeida in Harley Granville Barker's Waste in 200. Her other recent theatre credits include The Vortex at the Apollo Theatre, and Three Women and a Piano Tuner for Hampstead Theatre.

Leah Purcell is one of Australia's leading actors, and has won many awards for her work in theatre, on film and on television. Her Australian stage credits include Stuff Happens, The Marriage of Figaro and The Story of the Miracles at Cookie's Table. She has worked extensively on Australian television, and her film credits include Andrew Bovell's "Lantana" and "The Proposition."

Sargon Yelda's theatre credits include Salt Meets Wound for Theatre 503 and Stovepipe, a National Theatre/Bush Theatre Collaboration.

Andrew Bovell is an award-winning writer for theatre, film and television. His film, "Lantana," adapted from a stage play, won numerous awards including the London Critics' Circle Best Screenplay Award. His play Speaking in Tongues premiered in Sydney in 1996 and has subsequently been performed across Australia, in London, at the Roundabout Theatre in New York and in over 20 countries worldwide. He also co-wrote the original screenplay of "Strictly Ballroom" with Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce.

Michael Attenborough has previously directed The Mercy Seat, Five Gold Rings, Brighton Rock, The Late Henry Moss, Enemies, There Came A Gypsy Riding, Big White Fog, Awake and Sing! and Harold Pinter's The Homecoming during his current tenure as artistic director of the Almeida. He most recently directed Neil LaBute's In a Dark Dark House for the theatre.

To book tickets contact the box office at 020 7359 4404 or visit www.almeida.co.uk.

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