Casting is announced for RAPUNZEL, Park Theatre’s third Christmas show, with book, music and lyrics by Jez Bond and Mark Cameron, directed by Jez Bond from 3rd December, 2015 to 2nd January 2016, with press night on Monday 7th December, 2015
Olivier-nominated Rolan Bell, recently in the West End cast of Memphis, and also We Will Rock You and The Harder They Come, will play ‘King Gerard’; Mark Cameron will play ‘The Great Gazombees’, Aretha Ayeh will play ‘Rapunzel / Queen’, Alex Hope will play ‘Dobson / Prince Corbyn’, and Avita Jay will play ‘Dr Chuff’.
The King and Queen of Püss Püss are looking forward to the birth of their first child when disaster strikes: the Queen falls ill and only a powerful herb, known as Rapunzel, can save the mother and child. The noble Baron Teth offers to locate the herb, but the witch who grows it has her price… Darkness falls across the land as the child is snatched away. Eighteen years on, Prince Corbyn rides through the forest, he hears singing from an isolated tower. Perhaps all is not what it seems…
Following previous Park Christmas shows Sleeping Beauty in 2013, Jack and the Beanstalk in 2014, Rapunzel will be the third instalment in the ‘Chronicles of Waa’. Park Theatre’s Artistic Director Jez Bond explains, “with each fairy tale set in the mythical land of Waa, we have created a world all of our very own, complete with a unique language gestures and greetings – it even has its own flora and fauna! Costumes and settings all add to create this land, which borrows more from Tolkien, Pratchett or Tim Burton than to a traditional English pantomime. We’ve also dispensed with pop songs so common across UK theatres during Christmas, and instead each year present an original musical theatre score.”
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Jez Bond’s credits for Park Theatre include; Sleeping Beauty, Jack and the Beanstalk (both of which he co-wrote), Adult Supervision and Hurling Rubble at the Sun. Freelance credits include; The Fame Game (Tour of Austria), Sleeping Beauty (Salisbury Playhouse), Oliver! (starring Rowan Atkinson, Oxford), I Have Been Here Before (Watford Palace Theatre), The Twits (Tour of Switzerland), Misconceptions (Hong Kong Arts Centre), Big Boys (Croydon Warehouse), Shot of Genius (Leicester Square), Canaries Sometimes Sing (Kings Head & France) and A Season in South Africa (Old Vic). As a dramaturge he has worked with writers at Soho Theatre, Theatre Royal Stratford East, Royal Court and Young Vic.
Mark Cameron’s acting credits include; TV: Regular characters in Coronation Street; Steel River Blues; Emmerdale; Doctors plus guest roles in Law and Order; Waterloo Road; Casualty; Holby City; Eastenders; The Roman Mysteries; Vincent; Mayo; The Royal; The Bill; Fifty Five Degrees North; Extreme Endurance and Brookside. Film: Credits include: Scar Tissue; The Boss (2012 Reed Festival short film winner); The Damned United; Casanova’s Love Letters; Tomo (Sundance Film Festival Winner) and The Other Side. Theatre: Mathematics of the Heart (Theatre 503 and winner of Brighton Fringe festival – Best Play); Sleeping Beauty (Salisbury Playhouse); The Game of Love and Chance (National Tour); The Breakfast Soldiers (Contact Theatre, Manchester); The Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare in the Park); Romeo and Juliet (Cannizaro Park). Mark works extensively as a voice over artist for TV and Radio.
As a writer Mark has worked with Jez Bond a number of times before, co-writing Sleeping Beauty and Jack and the Beanstalk (Park Theatre) as well as over a hundred sketches for TooBigToPlay (also with Mark Gillis). He is currently working on a number of sitcoms and comedy-dramas for television.
Rolan Bell’s theatre credits include: Memphis (West End); We Will Rock You (West End and 40th Anniversary International Arena tour); Ragtime, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre); Fela!, and Liberation Day (National Theatre); 1936 (Arcola); The Harder They Come – nominated for Best Newcomer, What’s On Stage Award (Playhouse, Theatre Royal, Stratford East and Barbican); An African Cargo and An Evening of Soul Food (Greenwich Theatre); Carmen Jones (Royal Festival Hall); The Lion King (Disneyland, Paris); Cinderella and Jack and the Beanstalk (Cambridge Arts Theatre). Television credits include: Doctors, series regular in Eastenders and WPC 56 (BBC).
Aretha Ayeh’s theatre credits include: Love Me Tender (No.1 UK Tour); Barnum (Chichester Festival Theatre); Dick Whittington and his Cat (Lyric Theatre Hammersmith); Pendragon (Rose Theatre Kingston); Red Hunter (Youth Music Theatres UK); and Orvin-Champion of Champions (National Youth Musical Theatre). Film and TV credits include: Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them (Warner Bros. David Yates); The Quiet Ones (Hammer Films); Russell T Davies’s Cucumber (Channel 4).
Avita Jay’s theatre credits include: Spare (New Diorama Theatre), Toad (Southwark Playhouse), Sunday Morning at the Centre of the World (Southwark Playhouse, Battersea Arts Centre), The Merry Wives of Windsor (National Tour), Londonee (Rich Mix), Secret Cinema’s Brazil, Unsung (Wilton’s Music Hall), The Tragicomedy of Mac-Beth (National Tour), Warde Street (Park Theatre), Pioneer (National Tour), Peer Gynt (Crossrail Place) and The Man Who Found His Freedom (The Space Theatre). TV and Film credits include: Emmerdale (ITV), L8R (BBC2), Generation Z (Matador Pictures) the Bollywood feature London, Paris, New York and Twenty8K (Formosa Films). Avita also regularly narrates audiobooks and is a reader for InterAct Stroke Support.
Alex Hope’s theatre credits include: History Boys (National Tour); First Episode (Jermyn Street Threatre);
The Witness and Riot Squat (Thrive Theatre). Alex recently filmed Outlander for Left Bank Pictures.
Performances: 3 December – 2 January 2016
Tuesday – Saturday NB performance times vary, check website for details
Previews: 3, 4, 5 December
Press night: Monday 7 December @ 7.00 pm
Running Time: TBC
Booking: www.parktheatre.co.uk 020 7870 6876