Kwei-Armah Follows Regret with Nat Love at TricycleDate: 11 October 2007
Just two months after actor-playwright Kwame Kwei-Armah (pictured) premieres Statement of Regret, the final instalment of his National Theatre triptych at the NT Cottesloe (See News, 4 Sep 2007), he’ll present, and co-direct, another new play at north London’s Tricycle Theatre. Let There Be Love, set against the music of Nat King Cole, receives its world premiere on 21 January 2008 (previews from 17 January) and continues until 16 February.
Billed as “an immigrant’s tale of beginnings, endings and Britishness”, Let There Be Love revolves around West Indian pensioner Alfred Morris who, when kicked out of his daughter’s Croydon house, returns to his Willesden home to find he’s been gifted a ‘Polish cleaner/home help’. Eager to learn the ways of her new land, the cantankerous and xenophobic Alfred realises that he may indeed still have a role in life: he could teach Maria to be British – and if he succeeds, maybe she might help him in the most unexpected way.
Joseph Marcell will star as Alfred. Marcell’s previous Tricycle credits include Walk Hard Talk Loud, Gem of the Ocean (both part of the 2006 African-American season) and August Wilson’s King Hedley II. His other stage credits include Coriolanus and Under the Black Flag at the Globe and, earlier in his career, numerous productions for the RSC including Our Friends from the North. Marcell is well known to TV fans as the lugubrious butler Geoffrey in the 1990s American TV sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, which shot Will Smith to Hollywood fame.
Kwei-Armah’s Elmina's Kitchen premiered in the NT Cottesloe in May 2003 and his follow-up, Fix Up, followed in December 2004. Elmina's Kitchen won the 2003 Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Playwright and in 2005 it transferred to the Garrick Theatre, where Kwei-Armah (well known to TV fans from Casualty and Celebrity Fame Academy) took over the starring role and it became the first play written by a black Briton in the West End.
Let There Be Love will be co-directed by Tricycle artistic director Nicolas Kent, who will also helm the venue’s preceding production, the British premiere of Doubt, which is directed by Tricycle artistic director Nicolas Kent and runs from 22 November 2007 to 12 January 2008 (See News, 6 Aug 2007). Dearbhla Molloy, who stars as Sister Aloysius in John Patrick Shanley’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway play, is joined in the cast by Nikki Amuka-Bird as Mrs Muller, Padraic Delaney as Father Flynn and Marcella Plunkett as Sister James (See News, 9 Oct 2007).
- by Terri Paddock