Co-produced by the Everyman and Goold’s Headlong Theatre company, King Lear runs in Liverpool from 5 to 29 November 2008 (previews from 30 October) as part of the Everyman and Playhouse’s programming during the city’s reign as European Capital of Culture 2008. It will then transfer to the Young Vic for a limited season from 29 January to 29 March 2009, for which public booking will go on sale on 20 October.
King Lear returns Postlethwaite (pictured) to his Merseyside roots. Born in nearby Warrington, Postlethwaite was inspired to become an actor after attending productions at the Everyman in the 1960s. He has commented on his forthcoming role: “Doing King Lear is a big, big privilege – terrifying and exciting at the same time - and I hope it will fulfil all our dreams and hopes. I feel it is the right time, in the right place, with the right people.”
Best known internationally for his roles in films such as In the Name of the Father, The Usual Suspects, Brassed Off and The Shipping News, Postlethwaite’s many stage credits include Richard II, The Good Person of Sichuan, Funny Peculiar, The Recruiting Officer, The Rise and Fall of Little Voice and 2002’s Scaramouche Jones, for which he won Best Solo Performance in the Whatsonstage.com Theatregoers’ Choice Awards. Most recently, he’s appeared in productions of The Homecoming and The Tempest at Manchester’s Royal Exchange.
In the King Lear company, Postlethwaite is joined by John Shrapnel (as the Earl of Gloucester), Forbes Masson (the Fool), Nigel Cooke (Earl of Kent), Caroline Faber (Goneril), Charlotte Randle (Regan), Amanda Hale (Cordelia), Jonjo O’Neill (Edmund) and Tobias Menzies (Edgar). Also in cast are Michael Colgan, Clarence Smith, John-Paul MacLeod and Jacob Anderson. The production is designed by Giles Cadle, with lighting by Howard Harrison, costumes by Nicky Gillibrand and music and sound by Adam Cork.
Director Rupert Goold won a hat trick of Best Director gongs for last year’s Patrick Stewart-led Macbeth, which transferred to Broadway after runs at Chichester and in the West End. His Headlong production of Six Characters in Search of an Author has just transferred to the West End, and will soon be followed by his revival of Pinter’s No Man\'s Land, starring Michael Gambon and David Walliams, and, in December, his Drury Lane re-staging of Oliver!, which will mark his musical debut (See News, 2 Jun 2008). Further ahead, as announced over the past week, he’s signed up to direct Time and the Conways at the National and Romeo and Juliet at the RSC (See News, 22 Sep 2008).
- by Terri Paddock