From tonight, 30 September 2002, Rupert Degas and Brian Doherty assume the roles of Charlie Conlon and Jake Quinn in Marie Jones' Stones in His Pockets ahead of the multi award-winning two-hander's 1,000th performance at the Duke of York's Theatre on 16 October 2002. The production's West End run has now been extended up to January 2003.

Stones in His Pockets, a bittersweet tale about what happens when a Hollywood film crew moves in on a small Irish village, started life at Belfast's Lyric Theatre in April 1999 before steamrolling on to success in Dublin and Edinburgh. It was first seen in London at the fringe Tricycle Theatre before transferring to the West End's New Ambassadors Theatre in May 2000 for a limited twelve-week season and then on to the larger Duke of York's in August 2000.

A separate UK touring production launched a four-month schedule last month, while a second US tour will be mounted in November. To date, Stones in His Pockets has been translated into 16 languages and been performed in more than 20 cities around the globe.

The play's many awards include the, Olivier and Evening Standard awards for Best Comedy and a Special Achievement Award from the Outer Critics Circle in New York. Original star Conleth Hill has also been named best actor in the Irish Times, Olivier and awards. While, as at the 2001 Oliviers, both Hill and Campion were nominated for a Best Actor Tony Award.

Stones in His Pockets is directed by the author's husband, Ian McElhinney, with design by Jack Kirwan and lighting by James C McFetridge.

- by Terri Paddock