Beacham Plays Queen Elizabeth in Rex UK PremiereDate: 15 April 2002
Stephanie Beacham (pictured) will play Queen Elizabeth I next month when she takes the title role in Canadian playwright Timothy Findley's Elizabeth Rex. The play receives its British premiere at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre, where it runs from 3 to 18 May 2002.
Though best known for her television roles in Dynasty, The Colbys and the BBC series Tenko, Beacham has regularly returned to the stage where her recent credits have included Peter Hall's production of Wilde's An Ideal Husband and Fanny Burney's A Busy Day, both in the West End. This past year she toured the UK in Simon Williams' comedy Nobody's Perfect.
Elizabeth Rex had its world premiere at the Canada Stratford Festival in 2000, and charts the life of the 15th-century Queen, torn between her role as monarch and her life away from the throne, socialising with such characters as William Shakespeare. If a success, there is the possibility that the production may tour or transfer to the West End, though this has yet to be confirmed.
Toronto-born Findley has had success as a novelist as well as a playwright. His 1993 play The Stillborn Lover won the CAA and Chalmers awards for Drama.
In Elizabeth Rex, Beacham is joined by George Costigan as William Shakespeare and James Dreyfus as Ned. The production will be directed by Birmingham Rep artistic director Jonathan Church, with costumes and set designed by Simon Higlett and lighting by Nick Beadle. The production is supported by the Canadian High Commission.
- by Tim Connor