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Birmingham Stage Company announce cast for their production of Tom Gates

Tom GatesBirmingham Stage Company announce the full cast for their production of Tom Gates, written by Liz Pichon. Neal Foster directs Matthew Chase (Tom Gates), Ashley Cousins (Marcus/Granny), Matthew Gordan (Derek/Grandad), Amy Hargreaves (Amy/Delia), Daniel Harkin (Mr Fullerman/Dad) and Alice Redmond (Mum). The production opens on 20 March with previews from 14 February, and tours until 30 November 2019.

Tom’s doing everything possible to stay out of trouble but somehow he’s got THREE sad faces on the school achievement chart! And getting another sad face means Mr Fullerman won’t let him go on the SCHOOL TRIP! Moany Marcus Meldrew is making things worse and now Tom’s annoyed his grumpy sister Delia. EVEN Amy Porter (who’s smart) won’t talk to him! Can his best friend Derek help? Will Rooster the dog stop eating his homework? Will his grandparents the Fossils ever make something he can actually EAT?

With 15 books in the Tom Gates series so far, Liz Pichon is a multiple number one bestselling children’s author and illustrator. Over 5 million copies of Tom Gates books have sold in the UK and abroad and the series has been translated into 43 languages. Liz has won over 20 awards including the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, Waterstones Children’s Book Prize for ‘Best Fiction for 5 to 12-year-olds’, multiple Specsaver Bestseller Awards and a Blue Peter Book Award – and badge! In 2017, Liz was the World Book Day illustrator and the Tom Gates series has been optioned for television.

Matthew Chase plays Tom Gates. His theatre credits include Paw Patrol, Aliens Love Underpants (UK tour), 9 To 5 The Musical (The Gatehouse), The Hired Man (Union Theatre) and Personals (Landor Theatre).

Ashley Cousins plays Marcus/Granny. His theatre credits include Awful Auntie, Gangsta Granny (UK tour), Billy Elliot The Musical (Victoria Palace Theatre), Waiting For Godot (Reading Rep Theatre) and Sandel (Above The Stag). His television credits include Cradle to Grave.

Matthew Gordon plays Derek/Grandad. His theatre credits include Roost (Octagon Theatre Bolton) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Arundel Castle).

Amy Hargreaves plays Amy/Delia. Her theatre credits include Curl Up and Die (Tristan Bates Theatre), Piccadilly (Italian tour), Happily Ever After (Bunker Theatre) and Stone Soup (Albert Halls Bolton).

Daniel Harkin plays Mr Fullerman/Dad. His theatre credits include Guess How Much I Love You (UK tour), Comet (Pleasance Theatre), and Jane Eyre and The Wind in the Willows (UK and Ireland tour).

Alice Redmond plays Mum. Her theatre credits include Seasons Greetings, Oklahoma! (Gordon Craig Theatre), She Said The F Word, The Homosexual Necrophiliac Duck (Tètè â Tètè Festival), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (88 London Road), Oliver! (Frinton Summer Theatre), Cats (UK tour), Tracey Beaker Gets Real (Nottingham Playhouse/UK tour), Alice in Wonderland (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Carmen (New Vic Theatre/UK tour), Sinbad and the Diamond Princess (The Theatre, Chipping Norton), Cabaret (The Broadway Theatre) and Little Shop of Horrors (Landor Space).

Q&A with Alice Redmond

Alice Redmond
Alice Redmond

Q: What attracted you most to be a part of Liz Pichon’s Tom Gates?
Alice: I’m a big fan of cartoons and I love Liz’s gorgeously illustrated books so was very excited at the prospect of bringing them to life!

Q: You play the part of mum, can you tell us about your character?
Alice: Tom’s Mum is your typical lovely Mum!! (Of course, I’d say that, I’m playing her!!). She obviously has the daily hassles of getting her children to school and getting them to do their homework but at heart, she loves her kids!! She’s a massive fan of vintage clothing but not so much of cars with hotdogs on the roof.

Q: What is at the heart of the production?
Alice: The heart of this production is definitely fun!!

Q: This is a touring production – What do you enjoy most about touring?
Alice: The best thing about touring is seeing our fabulous country!! And the shoe shops they have to offer. You also get to see loads of our theatres and meet the people that work in them proving that our industry is still as strong as ever.

Q: Why should everyone get along to see this production?
Alice: This is an exciting realisation of a really popular book with music, animation and lots of fun!

*******

Neal Foster is Actor/Manager of Birmingham Stage Company which since its foundation in 1992 has staged over eighty productions. The company has become one of the world’s leading producers of theatre for children and their families, including Horrible Histories Live on Stage for thirteen years in the UK, Dubai, Qatar, Bahrain, Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand and Australia. Foster has written and directed all of the most recent Horrible Histories shows including Barmy Britain – Parts One, Two, Three & Four (Garrick Theatre, Apollo Theatre and Sydney Opera House); Groovy Greeks and Incredible Invaders for a national tour and Wicked Warwick at Warwick Castle. His first fictional adaptation was David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny, which transferred to the Garrick Theatre and then the Harold Pinter Theatre and was nominated for a Best Entertainment and Family Olivier Award. His adaptation of David Walliams’ Awful Auntie is completing its 18-month national tour and his next David Walliams’ show will be Billionaire Boy in autumn 2019.

Twitter: @TomGatesLive / @birminghamstage
Tom Gates is suitable for ages 5+

Tour Dates
Capitol Theatre, Horsham
14 – 17 February
Box Office: 01403 750 220
www.thecapitolhorsham.com/

Bristol Hippodrome
20 – 23 February
Box Office: 0844 871 3012
https://www.londontheatre1.com/theatres/bristol-hippodrome-theatre/

Lyceum Theatre, Crewe
27 February – 2 March
Box Office: 01270 368 242
crewelyceum.co.uk/Online/

Darlington Hippodrome
6 – 9 March
Box Office: 01325 405 405
www.darlingtonhippodrome.co.uk/

New Alexandra Theatre, Birmingham
13 – 16 March
Box Office: 0844 871 3011
https://www.londontheatre1.com/theatres/alexandra-theatre-birmingham/

Richmond Theatre
20 – 24 March
Box Office: 0844 871 7651
https://www.londontheatre1.com/theatres/richmond-theatre/

King’s Theatre, Southsea
27 – 31 March
Box Office: 023 9282 8282
kingsportsmouth.co.uk/

Guild Hall, Preston
10 – 14 April
Box Office: 01772 804 444
prestonguildhall.co.uk/

Liverpool Empire
17 – 21 April
Box Office: 0844 871 3017
https://www.londontheatre1.com/theatres/liverpool-empire-theatre/

New Theatre, Hull
1 – 5 May
Box Office: 01482 300 306
www.hulltheatres.co.uk/

Milton Keynes Theatre
8 – 11 May
Box Office: 0844 871 7652
https://www.londontheatre1.com/theatres/milton-keynes-theatre/

Swan Theatre, High Wycombe
5 – 9 June
Box Office: 01494 512 000
wycombeswan.co.uk/Online/

Playhouse, Weston Super Mare
12 – 16 June
Box Office: 01934 645 544
www.parkwoodtheatres.co.uk/Playhouse-Theatre/Home

New Victoria Theatre, Woking
19 – 22 June
Box Office: 0844 871 7645
https://www.londontheatre1.com/theatres/new-victoria-theatre/

Cliff’s Pavilion, Southend
11 – 14 July
Box Office: 01702 351 135
southendtheatres.org.uk/Online/

Eden Court, Inverness
18 – 20 July
Box Office: 01463 234 234
www.eden-court.co.uk/Online/default.asp

Venue Cymru, Llandudno
11 – 15 September
Box Office: 01492 872 000
venuecymru.co.uk/

Wyvern Theatre, Swindon
27 – 30 November
Box Office: 01793 524 481
swindontheatres.co.uk/

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