Olivier Winners Announce Early ClosuresDate: 12 May 2000
Two long-running Olivier award-winners have announced early closures this month. Conor McPherson's The Weir , which won the 1999 Olivier for Best New Play as well as Best Supporting Actor Olivier for Brendan Coyle, will close on 27 May, while Alan Ayckbourn's Comic Potential, for which star Janie Dee won this year's Best Actress award at the Oliviers as well as at the Evening Standard and Critics' Circle Awards, will close on 3 June.
The Weir focuses on a group of bachelors who gather in their local pub one afternoon to tell ghost stories and compete for the attentions of Valerie, a pretty young newcomer from Dublin. The Royal Court production was originally commissioned for the Royal Court Upstairs. It returned to the Royal Court Downstairs, then resident at the West End's Duke of York's, for two limited runs before announced an open-ended commercial run there in October 1998. Productions of The Weir have also toured the UK and transferred to Dublin and Broadway.
The Weir is directed by Ian Rickson, with design by Rae Smith, lighting by Paule Constable, music by Stephen Warbeck and sound by Paul Arditti. Its other accolades include the Evening Standard Most Promising Newcomer Award for McPherson and Best New Play honours in 1997 at both the Critics Circle and George Devine Awards. The Weir had been booking to the end of June 2000.
In Comic Potential, a sci-fi romance and Ayckbourn's 53rd play, Janie Day stars as acting android Jacie Triplethree who develops a sense of humour and falls in love with a human scriptwriter. The comedy, which co-stars David Soul and Matthew Cottle, premiered at the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough in 1998. It opened at the West End's Lyric Theatre on 13 October 1999 (previews from 12 October) and was booking to September 2000. It will now close on 3 June after a run of eight months.