Michael Pennington and Alexander Hanson Among Cast of Revival of Alan Bennett's Single Spies

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01 Aug 2014

Alan Bennett's Single Spies, a double-bill stage adaptation of his television films An Englishman Abroad and A Question of Attribution, is to be revived at the Rose Theatre, Kingston, in south-west London, beginning performances Sept. 25 prior to an official opening Sept. 30, for a run through Oct. 11.



Sarah Esdaile will direct a cast that includes Helen Schlesinger, Michael Pennington and Alexander Hanson. Also in the cast are Alex Blake, Steven Blake, Dario Coates and Thomas Coombes.

An Englishman Abroad, originally filmed in 1983, tells the true story of actress Coral Browne's chance encounter with disgraced spy Guy Burgess in a Moscow theatre. Invited to dine at his flat, she receives just one simple instruction - "bring a tape measure." Browne, who played herself in the TV version, will be played by Schlensinger, with Burgess, originally played by the late Alan Bates, now played by Hanson.

Schlesinger's recent stage credits include Coriolanus (Donmar Warehouse), Bracken Moor (Tricycle Theatre), Fireface (Young Vic) and Skåne (Hampstead Theatre). Hanson's stage credits include Stephen Ward (Aldwych Theatre), Jesus Christ Superstar (U.K. Arena Tour), A Little Night Music (Menier Chocolate Factory, West End and Broadway), Marguerite (Theatre Royal Haymarket), The Sound of Music (London Palladium), We Will Rock You (Dominion Theatre), Candide, Copenhagen and The Merchant of Venice (National Theatre).

A Question of Attribution, originally filmed in 1991, follows Anthony Blunt, esteemed art historian and Surveyor of the Queen's Pictures. As he tries to solve the riddle of an enigmatic painting, Blunt finds himself the subject of a more official investigation by MI5. Will he be exposed for what would later be revealed to the world - that the man who worked in the heart of the Royal household was also a Soviet spy? Blunt, originally played by James Fox, will be played by Pennington.

Pennington's recent stage credits include Antony and Cleopatra opposite Kim Cattrall at Chichester Festival Theatre, Collaboration and Taking Sides (Minerva Theatre, Chichester and West End's Duchess), King Lear (Theatre for a New Audience, New York) and Dances of Death (Gate Theatre) and Judgement Day (The Print Room).

To book tickets, contact the box office on 020 8174 0090, or visit www.rosetheatrekingston.org.