The Full Monty’s Mark Addy (pictured) returns to the National Theatre – where, early in his career, his credits included Wild Oats, The Shaughraun, Bartholomew Fair and Ghetto - to play Dogberry alongside Zoe Wanamaker and Simon Russell Beale’s Beatrice and Benedick in artistic director staging of Much Ado About Nothing (See News, 25 Jul 2007). The production joins the NT Olivier rep on 18 December 2007 (previews from 10 December).

In addition to The Full Monty, Addy’s screen credits include The Full Monty, The Flintstones, A Knight’s Tale and Around the World in 80 Days on film and Still Standing and The Thin Blue Line on television. Last year, he returned to the London stage after a long absence to appear in the West End revival of Michael Frayn’s Donkeys' Years.

Also now confirmed for the NT company are: Andrew Woodall (just seen in Gaslight at the Old Vic and Award nominated for The Voysey Inheritance at the NT last year) as Don John, Trevor Peacock (The Crucible in the West End) as Verges, Gary Pillai as Friar Francis) and Daniel Poyser as Borachio as well as, as previously announced (See News, 18 Sep 2007), John Burgess (Antonio), Susannah Fielding (Hero), Oliver Ford Davies (Leonato), Daniel Hawksford (Claudio), Maggie McCarthy (Ursula) and Julian Wadham (Don Pedro).

At north London’s Tricycle Theatre, Irish actress Dearbhla Molloy will play Sister Aloysius in the UK premiere of John Patrick Shanley’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway play Doubt, which is directed by Tricycle artistic director Nicolas Kent and runs from 22 November 2007 to 12 January 2008 (See News, 6 Aug 2007).

At a Catholic School in the Bronx in 1964, the year after the assassination of John F Kennedy, a strong-minded nun wrestles with her conscience in the face of concerns about one of the priests. Sister Aloysius reveals her initial doubts about the enigmatic Father Flynn to Sister James, an inexperienced but enthusiastic young nun. As her suspicions grow about his inappropriate behaviour with the school’s first black student, a verbal battle of wills begins and she instigates a relentless campaign to remove the priest.

Molloy has just been seen in the West End playing Orlando Bloom’s mother in In Celebration. Her other stage credits include Juno and the Paycock, Hinterland, The Cripple of Inishmaan, Arcadia and, on Broadway, Dancing at Lughnasa and A Touch of the Poet. She’ll be joined in Doubt by Padraic Delaney and Nikki Amuka-Bird.

At the Royal Court, Lolita Chakrabarti and Shelley King will star in Free Outgoing, which runs in the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs from 12 to 24 November 2007 (previews from 8 November), as part of the this year’s International Playwrights season. Written by Indian playwright Anupama Chandrasekhar, the play centres on Deepa, a well-behaved girl who sparks a nationwide moral outrage when a video clip of her with a boy in her class is posted online. Indhu Rubasingham directs.

And finally, in the West End, the and Olivier Award-winning comedy The 39 Steps welcomes a new cast this month. From 22 October 2007, Simon Day (Anything Goes, The Coast of Utopia), Josefina Gabrielle (Chicago, Oklahoma! and Martyn Ellis ( Award winner for Guys and Dolls) will join original cast member Simon Gregor in Patrick Barlow’s adaptation of John Buchan’s whodunit, memorably filmed by Alfred Hitchcock in 1935.

The 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. Day takes over from Robert Portal as Hannay, with Gabrielle and Ellis replacing Rachel Pickup and Jimmy Chisholm (See News, 20 Mar 2007). Maria Aitken directs.

- by Terri Paddock