Dickens Follows Private Lives into Albery, 7 MarDate: 4 February 2002
Simon Callow's one-man show The Mystery of Charles Dickens returns to the West End and the Albery Theatre next month. It will have a limited three-week season from 7 to 30 March 2002.
The Mystery of Charles Dickens, written by Dickens biographer Peter Ackroyd, gives an insight into the Victorian life and times of Dickens, interweaving his own turbulent story with some of his most memorable fictional characters from Mr Micawber to Mrs Gamp, Bill Sykes to Miss Havisham.
Callow, who plays the author and his characters in the one-man piece, was previously seen in the West End at the Savoy in 1997, where he recreated another famous writer in the one-man play, The Importance of Being Oscar, a celebration of Oscar Wilde. The same creative team that brought Oscar to the stage is also behind The Mystery of Charles Dickens, including director Patrick Garland, designer Christopher Woods and lighting designer Nick Richings.
The Mystery of Charles Dickens ran in the West End for four months in late 2000, first at the Comedy and then at the Albery Theatre. Last autumn, the production embarked on a UK-wide tour with a US transfer rumoured.
As an actor, Callow's other theatre credits include The Chimes at Midnight (Chichester Festival), while he also recently directed The Pajama Game (Victoria Palace). Renowned as a major screen presence, he has starred in such films as Shakespeare In Love, Four Weddings and a Funeral and Howard's End.
Ackroyd's most recent writing project was the historical analysis London: A Biography, and he is also the author of the best-selling novel Hawksmoor.
At the Albery, The Mystery of Charles Dickens follows the award-winning revival of Noel Coward's Private Lives which finishes its extended run on 3 March. In addition to seven Olivier nominations, the production today won two Whatsonstage.com Awards - for Best Actor (Alan Rickman) and Best Director (Howard Davies).
- by Terri Paddock