Skinner Makes Acting Debut in Art, 27 JulyDate: 13 July 1999
The West End production of Yasmina Reza's Art has announced its new cast - the production's eleventh since opening at Wyndham's Theatre on 15 October 1996. It will include British comedian Frank Skinner, making his West End acting debut. From Tuesday 27 July, Skinner will play Yvan along with Nicholas Woodeson as Marc and Art Malik as Serge, the three friends who fall out over a piece of modern art. The trio takes over from the all-American team of Judd Hirsch, Joe Morton and George Wendt, who transferred from the play's Broadway production at the end of June.
Skinner appeared in the West End as a comedian when his solo show sold out at the Palladium. He is best known for his television shows Fantasy Football and The Frank Skinner Show while his World Cup single 'Three Lions' was number one in the UK charts for six consecutive weeks last year. He is the second comedian to take on the stage play; Jack Dee has already performed two different roles in the production.
Woodeson has worked extensively in the theatre for the RSC, the National Theatre, the Royal Court and the Donmar Warehouse. His TV credits include Great Expectations, Woman in White and Pie in the Sky and his film credits include Mad Cows and The Pelican Brief. Malik has also worked widely in the London theatre, but is best known for his roles in TV series and films such as The Jewel in the Crown, A Passage to India, The Living Daylights and City of Joy.
The London production of Art - translated by Christopher Hampton and directed by Matthew Warchus - has long attracted top-notch actors for its short stints. The original cast starred Albert Finney, Tom Courtney and Ken Stott. Subsequent casts have featured the likes of Richard Griffiths, Henry Goodman, David Haig, Anton Lesser, Tom Mannion and Nigel Havers.
Last year, the Broadway production of Art, also directed by Warchus, opened to critical acclaim with a cast featuring Alan Alda, Victor Garber and Alfred Molina. Art won both the Evening Standard and Olivier Awards for Best Comedy. In New York, the play won the Tony and New York Critics Circle Awards for Best Play.