Henshall & Marshal Enter Sheffield Crucible RevivalDate: 16 December 2003
Douglas Henshall and Lyndsey Marshal will star in Sheffield's upcoming production of Arthur Miller's 1953 modern classic, The Crucible (See News, 29 May 2003). The revival will open in the new year at, fittingly, the Crucible Theatre for a limited season from 10 to 28 February 2004 (previews 4 February).
Set in 1692 in Massachusetts, The Crucible centres on the reign of terror unleashed during the Salem witchcraft trials, but was in fact a thinly veiled response from Miller to the 20th-century "anti-American" communist witch-hunts of Senator Joseph McCarthy.
Henshall, who plays John Proctor, was most recently seen on stage at the National in Tom Stoppard's epic The Coast of Utopia trilogy, while his screen credits include Psychos, This Year's Love and Angels and Insects.
Marshal, who plays Mary Warren, won this year's TMA Award for Best Supporting Actress for A Midsummer Night's Dream at Bristol Old Vic and, in the 2002 Critics' Circle Awards, was named Most Promising Newcomer for Redundant at the Royal Court and Boston Marriage at the Donmar Warehouse and in the West End.
The pair are joined in The Crucible cast by Ian Bartholomew (as Deputy Governor Danforth), Ruby Turner (Tituba) and, as Abigail, newcomer Sinead Matthews, who makes her professional debut after graduating from RADA this past summer. The new production is directed by Sheffield associate Anna Mackmin and designed by Lez Brotherston, with lighting by Paul Pyant and sound by Paul Arditti.
Currently running at the Crucible, Nikolai Foster's production of Broadway musical A Chorus Line continues until 24 January 2004. In the spring, The Crucible will be followed by Pam Gems' Piaf, starring Anna-Jane Casey and running from 16 March to 7 April 2004 (previews 11 March).
Elsewhere in the Sheffield season in the new year, Michael Grandage mounts his high-profile production of Tennessee Williams' 1958 drama Suddenly Last Summer, starring Diana Rigg and Victoria Hamilton (See News, 15 Oct 2003). It runs at Sheffield Theatre's Lyceum from 17 to 28 February 2004 (previews from 12 February), before continuing to Malvern, Edinburgh, Salford, Norwich, Plymouth and Newcastle until 17 April 2004, and then a possible West End transfer (See The Goss, 13 Nov 2003).
- by Terri Paddock