As previously tipped (See The Goss, 31 Aug 2004), Martin Shaw (pictured) will return to the stage in a major new production of Robert Bolt’s 1960 play A Man for All Seasons. It will run for six performances only, from 5 to 8 October 2005, at the Theatre Royal Windsor ahead of a West End transfer (venue still to be confirmed).

Shaw is best known for his television credits in the likes of Judge John Deed (now in its fifth series), The Scarlet Pimpernel, Rhodes, The Hound of the Baskervilles, Scott of the Antarctic, The Chief and The Professionals. Shaw’s stage credits include The Country Girl, Are You Lonesome Tonight and Peter Hall’s revival of Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband, which he performed on Broadway and in his last West End outing in 1997.

A Man for All Seasons is based on the true life of Thomas More, who confronted King Henry VIII in his rejection of the Roman Catholic Church in order to divorce and remarry. The play seeks to show how this scholar, ambassador, Lord Chancellor and friend of the king sacrificed the good life and the family he loved for a matter of conscience. Bolt’s play was famously made into a 1966 film, starring Paul Scofield as Thomas More, the part which will be played by Shaw. The new stage production will be directed by Michael Rudman and produced by Bill Kenwright.

- by Terri Paddock