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Plays Cast: Full Almeida Filumena, Master & Margarita

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Full casting has been announced for the Almeida Theatre's upcoming production of Eduardo de Filippo’s Filumena with Clive Wood, Sheila Reid, Victoria Lloyd, Luke Norris, Emily Plumtree, Richard Riddell, Geoffrey Freshwater, Brodie Ross and Edmund Wiseman joining the previously announced Samantha Spiro in the title role.

Almeida artistic director Michael Attenborough will helm the production, which is a new English translation by Tanya Ronder. It runs from 22 March (previews from 15 March) to 12 May 2012.

In the balmy heat of late ‘40s Naples, Filumena Marturano (Spiro) lies on her deathbed waiting to marry Domenico Soriano (Wood), the man who has kept her as his mistress for 25 years. But no sooner has the priest completed the ceremony, than Filumena makes a miraculous recovery. As he reels in shock, Domenico discovers that this brilliant, iron-willed woman has a few more surprises for him.

Clive Wood has recently appeared in both The Tempest and Flare Path as part of Trevor Nunn’s season at the Theatre Royal Haymarket. His other stage credits include Richard II, Richard III, Hamlet, Nicholas Nickleby, Antony and Cleopatra, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, and the title role in Henry IV parts I and II, for the RSC.

Sheila Reid is best known for playing Madge in ITV’s Benidorm. Her stage credits include Romeo and Juliet and Richard III for the RSC as well as spending seven years with Laurence Olivier’s National Theatre Company. At the Royal Court she has appeared in My Mother Said I Never Should, Black Milk and Terrorism and at the Donmar Warehouse she was seen in Into The Woods.

Geoffrey Freshwater has been an RSC company member since 2005. His National Theatre credits include The Alchemist, The Merry Wives of Windsor and The Mother as well as being seen on TV on Law and Order UK, The Government Inspector and No Bananas.

Victoria Lloyd appeared in the 2009 Almeida production of Measure for Measure. Her other theatre credits include Mine at the Finborough and Desire Under the Elms for the New Vic, Newcastle. Luke Norris’ theatre credits include War Horse, The Habit of Art and The Kitchen for the National and Remembrance Day for the Royal Court. His RSC credits include Days of Significance and The Gods Weep.

Emily Plumtree the role of Nerissa in Rupert Goold’s 2011 production of The Merchant of Venice for the RSC. She also played Bianca in The Taming of the Shrew in the same season. Her other theatre credits include Moonfleece at the Riverside Studios and Double Falsehood at the Union Theatre.

Richard Riddell played Bassanio in Rupert Goold’s 2011 production of The Merchant of Venice for the RSC as well as playing Joey in The Homecoming in the same season. His other theatre credits include The Comedy of Errors and Titus Andronicus for Shakespeare’s Globe.

Brodie Ross recently finished playing the role of Roderigo in the Sheffield Crucible production of Othello. His previous theatre credits include An Enemy of the People, also at the Crucible, and Charley’s Aunt for the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester.

Edmund Wiseman’s theatre credits include Dennis Kelly’s Osama the Hero at the Hampstead Theatre and Cheek by Jowl’s production of Macbeth at the Barbican.

Filumena has designs by Robert Jones, with lighting by Tim Mitchell and sound by John Leonard.

Casting has also been announced for Complicite's new English language adaptation of The Master and Margarita which will open at the Barbican on 20 March (previews from 15 March) and run until 7 April 2012.

The production, which sees the company return to the Barbican having previously staged Shun-kin and A Disappearing Number, is directed Simon McBurney.

Mikhail Bulgakov’s rich, magical realist novel pits the power of evil against the power of compassion. The Devil pays a visit to Stalinist Moscow in the guise of a professor of black magic and wreaks havoc in the city.

Themes of love, compassion and the quality of mercy are explored in three parallel stories. Two are set in the fervently atheistic Moscow of the 1930s and the third, as told in the narrative of the eponymous Master’s rejected novel, is set in Jerusalem at the time of Procurator Pontius Pilate during the last days of Jesus’ life.

Bulgakov worked on The Master and Margarita for twelve years and it was published posthumously in 1967.

The ensemble cast of Complicite performers, many of whom have worked on the company’s productions going back to The Street of Crocodiles includes: David Annen, Thomas Arnold, Josie Daxter, Johannes Flaschberger, Tamzin Griffin, Amanda Hadingue, Richard Katz, Sinead Matthews, Clive Mendus, Yasuyo Mochizuki, Ajay Naidu, Henry Pettigrew, Paul Rhys, Cesar Sarachu and Angus Wright.

The Master and Margarita has set design by Es Devlin, costume design by Christina Cunningham, lighting design by Paul Anderson, sound design by Gareth Fry, video design by Finn Ross and puppetry by Blind Summit Theatre. The production is adapted by Simon McBurney and the company from the novel by Mikhail Bulgakov and from an original English language adaptation by Ed Kemp.

A Complicite production, The Master and Margarita is co-produced by the Barbican; les Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg; Wiener Festwochen; Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen and Festival d’Avignon in association with Theatre Royal Plymouth.


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