Theatre News

Matthew Kelly and Simon Greenall star in Richard Bean's Toast at Park Theatre

Bean’s breakthrough play was based on his experiences working in a bread factory

Simon Greenall and Matthew Kelly will play Nellie and Cecil
Simon Greenall and Matthew Kelly will play Nellie and Cecil
© Ben Broomfield

Olivier Award winner Matthew Kelly and Alan Partridge star Simon Greenall have been cast in Park Theatre's forthcoming revival of Richard Bean's debut play Toast, WhatsOnStage can reveal.

Bean, whose subsequent plays include One Man, Two Guvnors and Great Britain, which premieres at the National Theatre tonight, based Toast on his experience working in a mass production bread plant aged 18.

"I met some of humanity's most desperate, funny and tragic human beings," Bean said recently of the experience, "and I was no less desperate, funny, or tragic myself."

Matthew Kelly, who plays Nellie, has recently appeared on stage in The History Boys (Sheffield), The Seagull (Southwark Playhouse) and Educating Rita (Menier Chocolate Factory).

Simon Greenall (Cecil) is best known for playing Michael opposite Steve Coogan I'm Alan Partridge. His other credits include Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa and Saxondale (also with Coogan). His stage credits include The Merchant of Venice and Woundings at the Manchester Royal Exchange.

Toast is produced by Snapdragon, who have previously staged Ben Travers' Thark and Paul Herzberg's The Dead Wait at the Park.

Snapdragon artistic director Eleanor Rhode will direct Toast, which runs in Park200 from 29 August to 21 September 2014 (previews from 27 August).

Richard Bean added: "In Toast each character is based on a real person, something I've rarely done since. Although I'm not in the play myself, it is autobiographical, in the sense that this is the factory in which I worked and these are men I worked with. I hope the play honours these men, some of whom are now dead."