Dancer Wayne Sleep (pictured) and comedian Norman Pace star in this year’s Holland Park Shakespeare Festival, which opens tonight (10 August 2004). The open air productions of Twelfth Night and Much Ado About Nothing run in repertory at the west London park, up to Sunday 15 August.

Sleep, who plays Feste in Twelfth Night, was recently seen on stage in the West End production of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang after his newfound TV fame in 2003’s I'm a Celebrity ... Get Me Out of Here!.

Pace, who plays Fabian in Twelfth Night and Dogberry in Much Ado About Nothing, is best known for his TV comedy show Hale and Pace and has previously appeared in Chicago in the West End.

This year’s company also features Carly Hillman and Julie Buckfield (Hollyoaks, Grange Hill). The productions are directed by Robert J Williamson, founder and actor manager of the R J Williamson Company, now celebrating its tenth anniversary year.

Following the London dates, the Shakespeare Festival productions move on to Kirkstall Abbey in Leeds, where they run from 17 August to 12 September 2004.

- by Terri Paddock