EastEnders' Shane Richie will play Archie Rice in a new touring production of John Osborne’s The Entertainer, which will open August 27 at the Curve Theatre ahead of a U.K. tour. Richie can currently be seen in the West End musical Everybody's Talking About Jamie.
“Osborne’s masterpiece was first presented in 1957 and alongside Archie Rice’s failing career, invited the audience to consider its own culture and what it meant to be English at a time of huge shifts within British society. Times have clearly changed, but as our country faces one of the most tumultuous periods since the end of the Second World War, the play once again captures the zeitgeist and is tantalisingly ripe for revival,” said Curve Chief Executive Chris Stafford and Artistic Director Nikolai Foster in a statement. “It’s a thrilling play - epic and filled with humanity—and provides Shane Richie with a role he was born to play; we know it will be an hilarious and heartbreaking performance. We are also thrilled to welcome director Sean O’Connor to Curve, whose compelling vision for the play will reveal it afresh to an entirely new generation.”
Sean O’Connor will direct the new adaptation that will tour through November. Additional casting will be announced at a later date.