The production reunites Filter and Holmes, who have previously worked together on acclaimed reinventions of Brecht’s Caucasian Chalk Circle and Twelfth Night. The latter, a co-production with the Royal Shakespeare Company, returns for a third London season at the Tricycle Theatre in May (See Today’s Other News).
While Holmes has promised that this new collaboration will be more faithful to Chekhov’s original play (in a version by Christopher Hampton), with less “chopping and changing” of the order, the classic 1901 drama – centring on siblings Masha, Olga and Irina who are stuck in a Russian army outpost, dreaming about freedom, romance and Moscow – will be staged in an empty theatre in order to “try to strip back Chekhov”.
Founded in 2001 by actors Ferdy Roberts (who will play Andrei), Oliver Dimsdale and musician Tim Phillips, Filter’s trademark is live integrated sound. In their minimally designed shows, they create an on-stage fusion of live and recorded music.
Garai, who plays Masha, is best known for her screen credits including Emma, Glorious 39 and Atonement, while her stage credits include Calico and Trevor Nunn’s Ian McKellen-led RSC productions of King Lear and The Tempest.
In Three Sisters, she’s joined by Clare Dunne and Poppy Miller as Irina and Olga, as well as Paul Brennen, Jonathan Broadbent, Jim Bywater, Nigel Cooke, David Judge, John Lightbody, Gemma Saunders, Mark Theodore, Sandra Voe and Paul Woodson.
In other play casting news:
Twenty-somethings David, Kojo and Sharon, who all grew up on a London estate, are eyeing another kind of life, but are struggling to choose the right path, with financial debts mounting and temptations all around. In Off the Endz, which is directed by Jeremy Herrin, Walters is joined by Daniel Francis as Kojo and Lorraine Burroughs (The Mountaintop) as Kojo’s girlfriend.
Set in the Norwegian fjordland, the drama takes place in Mrs Alving’s (Sharp) country house, where she is preparing for the opening of an orphanage, a memorial to her late husband. Mrs Alving’s son Oswald, an artist, returns home for the celebrations. A story of love, betrayal and hypocrisy gradually unfolds as ghosts from the past come back to haunt the family.