Christopher Morahan’s production - which ran from 2 to 31 October 2009 in Liverpool and is at the Theatre Royal Bath this week - marked a major comeback for Pryce, who spent much of his early career at the Everyman, where he eventually became artistic director and met his wife, the actress Kate Fahy. But, aside from a 40th anniversary gala event in 2004, he had not performed on the Everyman stage since the 1970s.
It was also the first major UK revival of the play since Pinter’s death last Christmas (See News, 25 Dec 2008) – and will be the first West End Pinter production since then - and was mounted with the playwright’s good wishes. Commenting ahead of the Liverpool opening (See WOS Northwest, 26 Aug 2009), Pryce said: “Last year Christopher Morahan asked me if I had ever thought of playing Davies. I said ‘yes, I want to do it in Liverpool’. Before his death Harold had given his blessing for this production. He knew how much the Everyman meant to me and was hoping to come and see it … we will try and honour a great man in a great theatre.”
Pryce has performed The Caretaker before, playing Mick in a 1980 National Theatre production, co-starring Kenneth Cranham and Warren Mitchell. Currently in the Everyman production, he’s joined by Tom Brooke and Peter McDonald as flat-sharing brothers Mick and Aston. McDonald will reprise his performance in the West End, with further London casting to be announced.
Pryce’s many previous theatre credits include Glengarry Glen Ross, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia? My Fair Lady, Oliver! and, earlier this year in London, Athol Fugard’s Dimetos at the Donmar Warehouse. His film and TV credits include Baker Street, Victoria and Albert, Leatherheads, The Pirates of the Caribbean, Ronin, Tomorrow Never Dies and Carrington.
The Caretaker has had several recent outings in London, including at the Tricycle Theatre in 2007, in Jamie Lloyd’s Sheffield Crucible production starring David Bradley, Nigel Harman and Con O'Neill; and in the West End, at the Comedy Theatre in 2000, when Michael Gambon, Rupert Graves and Douglas Hodge starred, directed by Patrick Marber.
Currently at Trafalgar Studios 1, another stellar offering that started regionally, the Northern Broadsides production of Othello led by Lenny Henry, finishes its run on 12 December (See 1st Night Photos, 21 Sep 2009).