Sinead Matthews
Sinead Matthews
© Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

Vivienne Franzmann's new play Pests at the Royal Court will star Ellie Kendrick and Sinéad Matthews.

The show is a co-production between Royal Court, Clean Break and Royal Exchange Manchester. Pests will run at the Royal Exhange from 12 to 22 March and then transfer to the Royal Court from 27 March to 3 May.

Sinéad Matthews will play Pink, the daring sister trying to escape a "rotting world." Her last performance at Royal Court was in A Time to Reap. Other recent theatre credits include Blurred Lines at the National Theatre, Trout Stanley at Southwark Playhouse and The Master and Margarita at the Barbican.

Rolly, Pink's more sensible half, will be played by Ellie Kendrick, whose previous Royal Court credits include The Low Road and In the Republic of Happiness. Her other theatre credits include Romeo and Juliet at Shakespeare's Globe, while on screen she's appeared in Game of Thrones, Misfits, An Education, Being Human, Upstairs Downstairs and The Diary of Anne Frank.

Pests, which is directed by Lucy Morrison, runs as part of the Royal Court's Jerwood New Playwrights Programme, supported by the Jerwood Charitable Foundation.

Following its run at the Royal Court it will visit the Traverse Theatre, Liverpool Playhouse, Drum Theatre, Plymouth and Birmingham Repertory Theatre.


In other casting news:

  • Linda Bassett will star in Barney Norris' Visitors, which runs at the Arcola Theatre from 10 February to 8 April as part of a national tour. The play, a comedy and a love story about a family falling apart in a farmhouse at the edge of Salisbury Plain, is directed by Alice Hamilton and also features Simon Muller, Robin Soans and Eleanor Wyld.

  • Brian Friel's Translations, which is revived at Sheffield Theatres from 17 February, will star Cian Barry (Owen), Niall Buggy (Hugh), Paul Cawley (Captain Lancey), Beth Cooke (Máire), Hannah James (Bridget), Gary Lilburn (Jimmy Jack), Rory Murphy (Doalty), Roxanna Nic Liam (Sarah), James Northcote (Yolland) and Ciaran O'Brien (Manus). The production, part of a season of work dedicated to Friel, will also travel to Cambridge, Exeter, Newcastle, Oxford, Ipswich and Kingston.