Richard Wilson is best known as an actor, particularly for his role as the grumpy old man Victor Meldrew in the television sitcom "One Foot in the Grave" in which he stars with Annette Crosbie. Wilson is, however, an accomplished stage actor, giving a wonderful performance as a demented doctor in Joe Orton's black comedy What the Butler Saw at the National Theatre a few years ago. He has also been seen recently in the West End, being the first celebrity guest to appear in The Right Size's hugely successful comedy The Play What I Wrote, which will return to Wyndhams Theatre in October 2002.
His connection with Where Do We Live is as director, however. The play, by Christopher Shinn, is set in New York, and is therefore comfortably in the mainstream of American-set dramas that seem to be doing particularly well in the West End at the moment — including Lobby Hero, Proof, This Is Our Youth and Up for Grabs.
This latest Manhattan-based play is a sign of the vitality of young American playwrights and of the transatlantic interests of British theatre audiences for whom New York retains a cachet and a street creed that London never seems to attract. The Royal Court was taking no chances with Where Do We Live, however, and has arranged support for the production from the American Friends of the Royal Court.
Set in an apartment in Manhattan, and featuring a young gay couple who live next to a black family with a secret tragedy, Where Do We Live is an urban tale for our times, in which the hedonistic world of drugs and big money meet .
Other Christopher Shinn plays staged at the Royal Court in recent years are Four (1998) and Other People (2000). For more information telephone the box office at 020 7452 3000.
—By Paul Webb Theatrenow