London s Art Rolls On to Sixth CastDate: 6 April 1998
The West End production of Yasmina Reza s Art has now announced its sixth cast which will take over on Monday, 21 April 1998. The new cast features Richard Griffiths as ‘Marc , Malcolm Storry as ‘Serge and Tony Haygarth as ‘Yvan .
Griffiths is well known for his work in British TV shows such as Pie in the Sky and films such as Withnail and I. His stage work includes recent appearances in the Almeida's Heartbreak House and Galileo. Haygarth has appeared in the West End productions of Twelve Angry Men and The Hothouse, both at the Comedy Theatre. Storry returns to Art having played ‘Marc in the fourth cast.
Storry is the second actor to return to the play in a new part. Roger Allam, ‘Marc in the current cast which finishes its run Saturday 19 April, played a ‘Yvan in the third cast. Director Matthew Warchus has said he'd like to see more role-swapping with the ultimate aim to have one cast who perform the play's three parts in rotation. Warchus has already had some success with the rotational concept which he employed in the Donmar Warehouse's 1994 production of Sam Shepard's story about two brothers, True West.
From the initial trio of stars - Albert Finney, Tom Courtenay and Ken Stott - Art has attracted top-notch British actors since it opened at Wyndham's Theatre in October 1996. Enticed by both the quality of the production and the attractiveness of limited three-month runs that are less disruptive to other professional engagements, players on the role call so far have included Henry Goodman (now playing in Chicago for which he's earned a 1998 Olivier nomination), David Haig, Nigel Havers, Anton Lesser and comedian Jack Dee who made his theatrical debut in the current cast.
Art tells the story of three friends whose friendship is tested when one of them purchases a modern art painting. It has won Best New Comedy awards at both the 1997 Laurence Olivier Awards and the 1996 Evening Standard Drama Awards. The Broadway production - starring Alan Alda, Alfred Molina and Victor Garber - opened last month.
Reza, Warchus and translator Christopher Hampton have been reunited for the London premiere of Reza's 1995 play, The Unexpected Man, which opens this month in a Royal Shakespeare Company production at the Barbican Pit. Starring Eileen Atkins (who's just finished in A Delicate Balance) and Michael Gambon, it explores the thoughts of a successful novelist and his number one fan who are travelling in the same train compartment.