Home » London Theatre News » Dakota Blue Richards makes her stage debut in ARCADIA as full cast announced

Dakota Blue Richards makes her stage debut in ARCADIA as full cast announced

Arcadia by Tom StoppardFull casting announced for major touring revival of Tom Stoppard’s ARCADIA Spring 2015. English Touring Theatre and Theate Royal Brighton Productions directed by Blanche McIntyre

Designed by Jonathan Fensom; Lighting Design by Johanna Town; Sound Design by Gregory Clarke, English Touring Theatre and Theatre Royal Brighton Productions today announced casting for a new touring production of Tom Stoppard’s comedy masterpiece, Arcadia, which will be the first major national tour since 1993, and over 20 years since the play has been seen by audiences around the UK. Directed by Blanche McIntyre, Arcadia will open at the Theatre Royal Brighton on 30 January 2015 before touring the UK to Bath, Bromley, Woking, Aylesbury, Truro, Birmingham, Cambridge, Malvern and Oxford until April 2015.

Dakota Blue Richards will make her stage debut as Thomasina, with other cast including Kirsty Besterman, Robert Cavanah, Tom Greaves, Nakay Kpaka, Ed MacArthur, Charlie Manton, David Mara, Flora Montgomery, Wilf Scolding, Larrington Walker and Ria Zmitrowitz.

In a stately home in 19th century rural Derbyshire , secret desires and professional rivalries take hold of the residents of Sidley Park. The daughter of the house, Thomasina Coverly, is a bright and talented pupil tutored by Byron’s friend Septimus Hodge, who makes a startling discovery well ahead of her time. In the present day, academics Hannah Jarvis and Bernard Nightingale attempt to piece together the fragments of truth that tell her story. Arcadia explores the delicate relationship between past and present, and is a witty and absorbing portrait of two generations of an aristocratic family as the focus moves from 1809 to now, and back to the past.

First premiered at the National Theatre in 1993 directed by Sir Trevor Nunn, Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia is considered one of the greatest plays of the last century, winning countless awards including the 1993 Olivier and Evening Standard Awards for Best New Play. Arcadia has twice been produced on Broadway, winning the 1995 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Play, and the 2011 Tony Award for Best Revival of Play. This production sees a new collaboration between English Touring Theatre (Translations, Ghosts, The Misanthrope)and Theatre Royal Brighton Productions (Dandy Dick, Blue Orange). Arcadia marks English Touring Theatre’s second time working with director Blanche McIntyre this year, following the tour of Noel Coward’s Tonight at 8.30.

Tom Stoppard said: ‘I’m delighted that a new tour of Arcadia, directed by the young, visionary Blanche McIntrye, is to take place next year reaching audiences across the UK. The current challenges for regional theatre in the UK mean that a production of this scale and quality are very rarely toured.’ Dakota Blue Richards plays Thomasina Coverly which will mark her professional stage debut. Film credits include:

Chicklit, The Fold, The Golden Compass, The Secret of Moonacre and Five Miles Out. Television credits include: Lightfields, Skins (Series 5 & 6) and Dustbin Baby. Kirsty Besterman plays Lady Croom. Theatre credits include: Tonight at 8.30 (Nuffield Theatre and English Touring Theatre); Private Lives (Royal Lyceum Theatre); Playhouse Creatures (Chichester); The Importance of Being Earnest (Rose Theatre, Kingston); Liberty, Much Ado About Nothing, The Merchant of Venice and Holding Fire (Shakespeare’s Globe); and The Rivals (Bath and Tour); Television credits include: Father Brown, Silent Witness; Doctors and Foyle’s War. Film credits include: Chicken.

Robert Cavanah plays Bernard Nightingale. Theatre credits include: Men Should Weep (National); Julius Caesar (Young Vic); Kill The Dead Torture Their Young (Traverse Theatre); Love For Love (Chichester); Tartuffe (Edinburgh Lyceum) and Troy (Traverse). Television credits include: Emmerdale, Waterloo Road, DCI Banks, Silent Witness, Father Brown, Hustle, River City, Rebus, The Royal, Doctors, Casualty, Rose And Maloney, Murder In Mind, Blue Dove, Highlander: The Raven, Wuthering Heights, Kavanagh QC, Cracker, The Governor and Cadfael. Film credits include: Sahara, Tomb Raider II, Talk Of The Devil, Billy & Zorba, Hanu, Saving Grace, Jonny Loves Susie and Being Human.

Tom Greaves plays Captain Brice. Theatre credits include: Agatha (Yard); The Last Days Of Juda Iscariot (Shoreditch Church); Four Knights In Knaresborough and Henry V (Southwark Playhouse); Visions Of Kerouac (Half Moon); This Is How It Goes and Two Tales (King’s Head, Islington); Romeo And Juliet (Chocolate Factory) and Freesia (BAC).

Nakay Kpaka plays Ezra. Theatre credits include: Rachel (Finborough).Television credits include: Broadchurch 2, Grantchester and Whitechapel. Ed MacArthur plays Valentine Coverly. Ed graduated from Bristol Old Vic Theatre School in 2014. Theatre credits include: Inheritance Blues (DugOut), Stackard Banks is Self-Discovered (Edinburgh Festival) and The Life Of Stuart: Backwards (HighTide).

Charlie Manton plays Augustus / Gus Coverly. Theatre credits include: Burn (Guildhall); Love Never Dies (Really Useful Group); The Magic Flute (ENO, Opera Holland Park, Royal Opera House); Tosca (Richmond); The Turn of The Screw (ENO, Opera Bari, Opera Leipzig, Glyndebourne, Guildhall) and Galileo (National). Television credits include: Diana: last Days Of A Princess. Film credits include: The Man In The Box, The Imitation Game. Radio credits include: The Hedge Of Thorns and Three Men In A Boat.

David Mara plays Jellaby. Theatre credits include: The James Plays and The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night Time (National); Pocket Henry V (Propeller); Oliver (Sheffield); The Second Mrs Tanqueray and Treasure Island (Rose Kingston); Othello (Donmar); The Tempest (Old Vic); Julius Caesar, King John, As You Like It, The Comedy Of Errors and La Lupa (RSC); Adam Geist (Royal Exchange Manchester); Antony and Cleopatra and As You Like It (English Shakespeare Company). Television credits include: Casualty, Murder In Mind, Taggart, Dig It All and Doctors. Film credits include: Memorabilis.

Flora Montgomery plays Hannah. Theatre credits include: Good Grief, In The Next Room and The Good Soldier (Theatre Royal Bath, and St James, London); The Heart Of Robin Hood (RSC); Uncle Vanya and The Four Alice Bakers (Birmingham Rep); How Many Miles To Basra (West Yorkshire Playhouse); Hard (Tricycle); The Shape Of Things and Bash (Gate, Dublin) and Miss Julie (Lyric, Belfast – Irish Times Best Actress). Television credits include: Granchester, Wodehouse in Exile, Father And Son, Midsomer Murders, Monarch of The Glen, Poirot, An Unsuitable Job For A Woman, Heat Of The Sun, Mosley, The Perfect Blue and The Governor. Film credits include: Basic Instinct 2, Risk Addiction, After, Man To Man, Goldfish Memory( Best Actress Monte Carlo Film Festival, Shooting Star Berlin Film Festival) and When Brendan Met Trudy (Best Actress Las Palmas Film Festival).

Wilf Scolding plays Septimus Hodge. Theatre credits include: Strange Interlude (National). Television credits include: The Passing Bells, Borgia III, Doctors and Skins. Film credits include: Put Down. Radio credits include: The Golden Years: Friedrichstrasse, BBC Radio Rep and Direct Red.

Larrington Walker plays Richard Noakes. Theatre credits include: As You Like It, American Trade, Antony And Cleopatra, King Lear, Julius Caesar, The Winter’s Tale, The Taming Of The Shrew, The Tragedy Of Thomas Hobbes and The Merchant Of Venice (RSC); Daddy Cool (Shaftesbury); Playboy Of The West Indies (Tricycle/Nottingham); Stuff Happens (National); Blues For Mr Charlie (Wolsey/Tricycle); The Merchant Of Venice (West Yorkshire Playhouse); The Beggars Opera and Guys And Dolls (National); and Jesus Christ Superstar (Palace). Television credits include: Vicious, Doctors, The Mill, Holby City, Second Coming, Casualty, Peak Practice, Inspector Morse, Thin Air, Drums Along Balmoral Drive, Moon Over Soho, Black On Black, Minder and The Chinese Detective. Film credits include: Happy Toys, Second Coming, Human Traffic, Lamb, Burning Illusion and Yanks.

Ria Zmitrowitz plays Chloe Coverly. Theatre credits include: Four Minutes Twelve Seconds (Hampstead); God’s Property (Soho/Talawa); Chapel Street (Underbelly/ Bush); Cortae (Talawa); Tits/Teeth (Soho/NYT) and The Site (Roundhouse).Television credits include: Mr Selfridge, Nightshift, Youngers, The Midnight Beast, Casualty, Murder On The Home Front, Whitechapel. Film credits include: Kill Your Friends, Some Candid Observations, Two Seas.

Blanche McIntyre directs. Recent credits include Accolade (St James’ Theatre and Finborough Theatre). She was named Best Director at the 2013 TMA UK Theatre Awards (for The Seagull), was the winner of the Critics’ Circle Award for Most Promising Newcomer and the Off West End Theatre Award for Best Director in 2012, and the inaugural winner of the Leverhulme Bursary for Emerging Theatre Directors in 2009. She is currently Associate

Director at Nuffield and was previously Associate Director at Out of Joint in 2010, and Director in Residence at the National Theatre Studio and the Finborough Theatre in 2009. Directing credits include The Comedy of Errors (Shakespeare’s Globe), Tonight at 8.30 (English Touting Theatre UK Tour), The Nutcracker (Nuffield), Ciphers (Out Of Joint UK Tour), The Birthday Party (Manchester Royal Exchange), The Seagull (Headlong UK Tour/Nuffield), Liar Liar (Unicorn Theatre), The Only True History of Lizzie Finn (Southwark Playhouse), The Seven Year Itch (Salisbury Playhouse), Repentance/Behind The Lines (ANGLE at the Bush Theatre), Foxfinder, Accolade, Molière or the League of Hypocrites (Finborough Theatre), and When Did You Last See My Mother? (Trafalgar Studios).

Tom Stoppard is a playwright and screenwriter, and is one of the most internationally performed dramatists of his generation. He has written prolifically for stage, film, television and radio, and his best known plays include The Coast of Utopia, Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, The Real Thing, and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. He co-wrote the screenplays for the films Brazil, Shakespeare in Love and The Russia House, and he has received an Academy Award and four Tony Awards. He was knighted in 1997.

Arcadia was recently voted one of the nation’s top five plays in English Touring Theatre’s ‘My Favourite Play’ poll, which was conducted to mark the company’s 21st Birthday celebrations. www.ett.org.uk

Thursday 29th January 2015


  • Neil Cheesman

    First becoming involved in an online theatre business in 2005 and launching londontheatre1.com in September 2013. Neil writes reviews and news articles, and has interviewed over 150 actors and actresses from the West End, Broadway, film, television, and theatre. Follow Neil on Twitter @LondonTheatre1

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