Terence Rattigan Centenary Kicks Off in London With Less Than Kind; Casting Announced

News   Terence Rattigan Centenary Kicks Off in London With Less Than Kind; Casting Announced
Leading mid-20th century playwright Terence Rattigan, born June 10, 1911, will have the centenary of his birth marked in 2011 with productions that include the premiere of Less Than Kind, the original 1944 draft of a play that was subsequently extensively rewritten and produced under the title Love in Idleness as a vehicle for Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne. 

Terence Rattigan
Terence Rattigan

It will begin performances Jan. 18, 2011, prior to an official opening Jan. 21, for a 4-week run through Feb. 12 only.

Other major productions during the Rattigan centenary year will include new productions of his final play Cause Célèbre, opening at the Old Vic in March, and The Deep Blue Sea at the West Yorkshire Playhouse in Leeds, opening in February.

According to press materials, the plot of Less Than Kind concerns Michael Brown (to be played by David Osmond), an idealistic socialist 17-year-old who on his return from five years' evacuation in Canada during World War Two, is horrified to find Olivia (Sara Crowe), his widowed mother living with Sir John Fletcher (Michael Simkins), a married Tory MP and industrialist. The play centers on Olivia’s anguish as she is torn between her love for her son and for her lover. The cast also includes Caroline Head, Katie Evans and Gillian Roy. It is directed by Adrian Brown, designed by Suzi Lombardelli with lighting and sound by Justin Emrys-Smith. It is produced by Planet Theatre Productions Ltd and Alex von Saxe Productions Ltd in association with Jermyn Street Theatre.

Simkins was most recently seen on the London stage in Alan Ayckbourn's Taking Steps at the Orange Tree and in The King and I at the Royal Albert Hall. Other credits include Donkey's Years in the West End, and he will be seen in the new BBC series of "Lead Moon" with Jack Dee. He is also a regular newspaper columnist and author.

Crowe was most recently seen in Bedroom Farce at the Duke of York's and Calendar Girls at the Comedy Theatre. Osmond was in The History Boys at the National; other credits include touring productions of the musical Spend Spend Spend and Lark Rise to Candeford.

Director Adrian Brown received an Emmy Award for the TV version of "The Belle of Amhurst" with Claire Bloom. He has directed for television and theatre throughout his career. Most recently he has directed Wild Oats, The School For Wives and The Spanish Tragedy.

To book tickets, contact the box office on 020 7287 2785, or visit www.jermynstreettheatre.co.uk.

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