Goodman & Atkins Throw Party at Duchess, 25 AprDate: 11 February 2005
As previously tipped (See The Goss, 24 Dec 2004), the Birmingham Rep revival of Harold Pinter’s 1958 modern classic The Birthday Party, starring Henry Goodman and Eileen Atkins, will come to the West End this April. A month before it even opens at Birmingham, producers confirmed that it will transfer to the West End’s Duchess Theatre on 25 April 2005 (previews from 20 April).
Pinter’s first full-length play, The Birthday Party centres on unemployed musician Stanley, who leads a mundane but peaceful life as the only guest living with the mumsy doting Meg (Atkins) and quiet agreeable Petey. When the sinister Goldberg (Goodman) and McCann arrive, their intentions grow progressively ominous. Everyone, from the resort owners to the unsuspecting girl next door, becomes caught up in Stanley´s peculiar birthday party.
Goodman’s many London stage credits include Art, Guys and Dolls, Angels in America, Feelgood, Follies, Chicago, as well as The Merchant of Venice and Assassins, both of which he won Oliviers for.
A fellow multiple Olivier winner, Atkins has won awards for Cymbeline, The Unexpected Man and last year’s Honour. Her other stage credits include The Killing of Sister George and, earlier this year on Broadway, The Retreat from Moscow, for which she was nominated for a Tony Award.
The Birthday Party is directed by Lindsay Posner, whose recent West End credits include David Mamet’s Sexual Perversity in Chicago, Oleanna and, currently in the West End with Patrick Stewart and Joshua Jackson, A Life in the Theatre. The cast also features Geoffrey Hutchings, Finbar Lynch, Sinead Matthews and Paul Ritter.
Currently at the Duchess Theatre, Maria Aitken’s revival of Terence Rattigan’s 1963 play, Man and Boy, starring David Suchet as a corrupt financier, finishes its limited season on 16 April 2005. The Pinter revival is presented by Birmingham Rep in association with Duncan C Weldon. Prior to the West End, it runs at Birmingham from 11 to 26 March 2005 before visiting Bath (28 March to 2 April) and Malvern (4 to 9 April).
- by Terri Paddock