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Stewart Plays Bard in Bond's Bingo???

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Recently-knighted Patrick Stewart is rumoured to be returning to the stage later this year to play none other than William Shakespeare.

According to today's Daily Mail, Stewart will play the role in a revival of Edward Bond's 1973 play Bingo at the Chichester Festival Theatre in April. The play, which will be directed by Angus Jackson, imagines the Bard as a retired and suicidal landlord making life hell for his tenants.

Stewart was last seen on stage last year alongside fellow theatrical knight Ian McKellen in the Theatre Royal Haymarket's production of Waiting for Godot, which recently returned to the venue with Roger Rees replacing Stewart as Vladimir (See News, 23 Nov 2009).

Another production rumoured for Chichester's new season, which is due to be announced next week, is a revival of George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion, which will see Rupert Everett starring as voice coach Henry Higgins alongside Stephanie Cole as his mother. Director Philip Prowse is apparently still "casting about" for his Eliza Doolittle.

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