NTís Mysteries Team Reunites for Good HopeDate: 17 August 2001
Bill Bryden and John Tams (pictured), the creative force behind the National Theatre's Olivier Award-winning The Mysteries, are reuniting for a major new work. Entitled The Good Hope, the project is an updated version by Lee Hall of a classic Dutch drama. The run opens at the National Cottesloe on 8 November 2001, starring Charlotte Emmerson and Iain Robertson.
In The Good Hope, a local community waits ashore as a storm threatens those working out at sea. Described as a ďpoetic account of the fishermanís lifeĒ, The Good Hope hasnít been performed in the UK for more than 50 years. The current adaptation is by Lee Hall, the award-winning writer of Billy Elliot, Cooking With Elvis and Spoonface Steinberg. Hall has transported the original story from Holland to a North Yorkshire coastal setting.
Actress Charlotte Emmersonís theatre credits for the National include The Cherry Orchard and The Crucible. She has also performed in Baby Doll (National and Albery), A Hatful of Rain (The New Grove) and The Anastasia File (Courtyard). Her film career has embraced Stephen Poliakoffís Food of Love, with TV appearances including Peak Practice, The Bill and A Touch of Love. Scottish actor Iain Robertson has appeared in the NT's millennium production of The Mysteries and on TV in Silent Witness and Kavanagh QC.
The Nationalís The Mysteries remains one of the most acclaimed works of recent times. Also broadcast on BBC Radio 4, Tony Harrisonís verse drama of the Wakefield and York medieval miracle plays was directed by Bill Bryden. John Tams, who composed the Mysteries score, has written the music and lyrics for The Good Hope too.
Brydenís distinguished career for stage and screen has incorporated other National works such as Lark Rise to Candleford and Dispatches (both with Tams composing), plus The Son of Man for the RSC. Bryden won the 1986 Olivier for The Mysteries (Best Director), as did William Dudley for Best Designer.
Musician, composer and actor John Tams is one of Britainís most respected folk artists. An integral member of influential acts such as The Albion Band and Home Service, he won the BBC Folk Award last year for Best Album and Best Song. Alongside his work for the National, Tams has acted in numerous plays and starred in the major television drama Sharpe, for which he wrote the music. Tams is also the co-founder of the No Masters recording label.
- by Gareth Thompson