Penelope Wilton (Downton Abbey) and Luke Evans (Beauty and the Beast) will star in a new comedy penned by Marcelo Dos Santos, titled Backstairs Billy.
Following the relationship between the Queen Mother (Wilton) and her loyal manservant, the titular Billy (Evans), during the 1979 tumult in the UK, the play is directed by Michael Grandage (Frozen, Orlando).
Dos Santos, whose five-star solo show Feeling Afraid As If Something Terrible Is Going To Happen opens in London this autumn at the Bush Theatre, is a former recipient of the MGCfutures Bursary – a charity established by Grandage to support theatre makers across all aspects of the industry.
The comedy has set and co-costume design by Christopher Oram, co-costume design by Tom Ran, lighting design by Ryan Day, music and sound design by Adam Cork, wigs, hair and make-up design by Carole Hancock, casting by Jacob Sparrow, associate direction by Sophie Drake and costume supervision by Mary Charlton.
Grandage said today: “It is always a great moment to celebrate the birth of a new comedy in the West End and particularly from an important new voice such as Marcelo Dos Santos. I am thrilled to be working again with Penelope Wilton and Luke Evans alongside a cast of twelve other actors as we bring an exciting new play to the stage this autumn and over the Christmas period ahead.”
The piece will play at the Duke of York Theatre from 27 October to 27 January, with tickets on general sale below. MGC will also guarantee that there are £10 tickets available at every performance across the run.