Dianne Pilkington, currently starring as Glinda in Wicked at the Apollo Victoria, will move across town to the Criterion when she joins the new cast of The 39 Steps from 26 April 2010.

Pilkington, who will play the roles of Annabella Schmidt, Pamela and Margaret, will be joined by David Bark-Jones as Hannay, and Timothy Speyer and Jeremy Swift as Man 1 & 2 in the multi award-winning comedy.

In Patrick Barlow’s stage adaptation of the John Buchan whodunit, inspired by the 1935 Alfred Hitchcock film, four actors play “150 roles” between them to tell the tale of London bachelor Richard Hannay fleeing to Scotland and breaking a spy ring to prove his innocence after a woman is found murdered in his home. Maria Aitken directs.

Dianne Pilkington's previous West End roles include: Grizabella in Cats; Belinda in The Far Pavilions; Mary in Tonight’s the Night; and Kim in the original cast of Boy George’s musical Taboo.

David Bark-Jones has been seen on screen in the films Rocknrolla and The Da Vinci Code. On stage he appeared at the National Theatre in The Forrest and in the original cast of Dealer’s Choice.

The 39 Steps is produced by Edward Snape for Fiery Angel Ltd and Tricycle London Productions Ltd in association with the West Yorkshire Playhouse. It's currently booking through to 23 October 2010. 


Actor and impressionist Alistair McGowan and musical actress Charlotte Page will reprise their 2009 Edinburgh show Cocktails with Coward at the Riverside Studios next month (26 March to 4 April 2010).

The show features a selection of rarely performed poems and songs from the celebrated playwright's oeuvre, and promises “a lot of laughter, and a few tears - proof positive that Coward was an unsurpassed observer of language, character and the human heart”.

BAFTA winner Alistair McGowan is best known for his hit TV show The Big Impression, but he is also an accomplished actor and has starred in the BBC's adaptation of Bleak House, the RSC's The Merry Wives of Windsor, and a West-End run of The Little Shop of Horrors. Charlotte Page's recent credits include The Phantom of the Opera and Follies.


In other casting news:

  • Casualty's Clive Mantle will star in Jus' Like That! - A Night Out With Tommy Cooper, at the Festival Theatre, Edinburgh on 31 March. Billed as "a hilarious evening of non-stop entertainment featuring all the best gags and magic tricks that Tommy became famous for", the show coincides with the 25th anniversary of the legendary comedian's on-stage death.
  • Strictly Come Dancing’s Katya Virshilas has been confirmed as the star dancer performing in Liverpool’s "spectacular" Spring Ball at St. George’s Hall. Virshilas will be joined by her Danish professional dance partner Klaus Kongsdal in the Great Hall on 17 April 2010.