Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Preview: East is East at Newcastle Northern Stage



Cast & creative team announced for new production of East is East


East is East
Newcastle Northern Stage
Tuesday 18th April - Saturday 13th May 2017

By Ayub Khan-Din
Directed by Suba Das

A brand new production of the Olivier Award-winning comedy that went on to become a BAFTA-winning film sensation, East is East opens in Newcastle (18 April - 13 May) before transferring to the Nottingham Playhouse (25 May – 10 June).

Although the play is set in the 1970s, director Suba Das plans to reimagine the play for the 21st Century, working with an anarchic young creative team led by 2016 Linbury Prize-winning designer, Grace Smart.

Audiences will recognise the living room and chip shop they know and love from the film, but with a fresh theatrical spin as we imagine what it’s like to see the world of 1970s Salford through the eyes of the Khan family’s youngest son, the parka-wearing Sajit.

Director Suba Das, says: “East is East is one of the most loved British comedies of our times, telling a hilarious and heart-breaking story of what it means to live and love across two different worlds and cultures. It was a huge part of my childhood and it’s an honour to lead the production that marks the 20th anniversary of this Olivier and BAFTA winning story.

Director Suba Das       Photo Mark Savage
“While the story feels more timely than ever, it’s so exciting to be reimagining the play for the 21st Century and we’ve assembled a stunning cast of British talent to play the Khans, with National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company and West End credits amongst them; led by the phenomenal Vicky Entwistle as Ella. Loved by so many for her iconic role as Janice Battersby in Coronation Street, Vicky brings all of the gutsiness and grit of the quintessential Manchester matriarch to the production.”

The ensemble cast is led by Kammy Darweish as patriarch George Khan and Vicky Entwistle as his long-suffering wife Ella.

Best known for her role as Janice Battersby in ITV’s Coronation Street, Vicky Entwistle’s theatre credits include the role of Madame Th√©nardier in Les Mis√©rables in the West End, Mrs Baldry in the 2012 tour of Funny Peculiar, Woman 3 in the UK tour of The Vagina Monologues and most recently the demonic diva Carabosse in Sleeping Beauty at the Sunderland Empire in 2016.

Kammy Darweish has performed with prestigious companies including the National Theatre, Bristol Old Vic, the Royal Shakespeare Company and Shakespeare's Globe, and has toured in the UK, USA, Middle East and Far East. Kammy has also made numerous TV and film appearances including Skyfall, Eastenders, Spooks and 55 Degrees North.

Judy Flynn plays Auntie Annie. Fondly remembered by many as Julie in BBC sitcom the Brittas Empire, Judy has appeared on screen in dozens of TV comedies and dramas, as well as on stage at some of the UK’s biggest theatres including the National Theatre. Best known for playing the long running role of Dr. Kevin Tyler in the BBC daytime soap Doctors, Simon Rivers will play Abdul Khan. Omar Malik plays Tariq Khan.

Omar has appeared all over the UK on stage and has worked with the likes of BBC, ITV and HBO. He is known for roles as Fayed in the thriller Billionaire Ransom (2016) and Naz in Coronation Street. Saleem Khan is played by Raj Bajaj who has worked with both the RSC and the Royal Court, and most recently appeared in Olivier Award-nominated musical, Bend it Like Beckham in the West End. Member of 'Sheep Soup', one of Curve Leicester's Breakthrough theatre companies, Sabrina Sandhu plays Meenah Khan. Viraj Juneja who played the lead role in last year’s critically acclaimed Haram Iran at Above the Stag Theatre in London plays Sajit Khan.

The creative team includes lighting designer Prema Metha who has worked with the likes of the O2 Arena, Latitude Festival, Liverpool Everyman, Derby Theatre, South Bank Centre, Westminster Hall and Madame Tussauds; and Sound Designer and Composer Chris Bartholomew - a recent graduate of Guildhall's Electronic Music Studios who has designed stage productions including Light by Theatre Ad Infinitum (Ed Fringe, Barbican Pit, UK Tour), Jack and the Beanstalk at The Park Theatre, and Shooting With Light by Idle Motion (New Diorama, UK Tour, China Tour).

Returning to his native North East before directing the world premiere of Ravi Shankar’s only opera for The Royal Opera and London Philharmonic Orchestra, Sukanya, Suba Das adds: “It’s a thrill to be returning home to direct my first big show in the North East, and what a title for a homecoming. I can’t wait to get started – we’re going to have a lot of fun!”

Cast
George Khan           Kammy Darweish
Ella Khan                    Vicky Entwistle
Abdul Khan              Simon Rivers
Tariq Khan                 Omar Malik
Maneer Khan           TBA
Saleem Khan            Raj Bajaj
Meenah Khan          Sabrina Sandhu
Sajit Khan                   Viraj Juneja
Auntie Annie            Judy Flynn
Mr Shah                      Rez Kabi

Creative team
Director                      Suba Das
Writer                          Ayub Khan-Din
Designer                              Grace Smart
Sound Designer
Lighting Designer     Prema Mehta



Tickets
East is East opens in Newcastle in April 2016. 

TUE 18 APR - SAT 13 MAY, 7.30pm
SAT 29 APR, WED 3, SAT 6, WED 10 and SAT 13 MAY, 2pm
Straight from work performance TUE 2 MAY, 6pm

Tickets:
Tue - Fri eves & Sat Matinees: £25 | £20.50 | £15.50
Sat eves £26 | £20.50 | £15.50
Students & Under 21s £13

Previews (Tue 18 - Wed 19 Apr) all tickets £15.50

Post show discussion: Tue 2 May

Running time: Approx 2 hours 30 mins (including interval)

Recommended Age: 14+
For more information or to book tickets visit http://northernstage.co.uk/whats-on/east-is-east  or call 0191 230 5151. 




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