Imelda Staunton, Rupert Everett and Carlos Acosta lead Chichester 2014 season.
Imelda Staunton is to star as Mama Rose in Gypsy at Chichester Festival Theatre in autumn 2014, in a show that will bring together again the creative team behind the venue’s 2011 production of Sweeney Todd.
Gypsy, part of the theatre’s 2014 season, will be one of the opening productions in the newly refurbished grade II-listed Festival Theatre following a £22 million restoration.
The Jule Styne and Stephen Sondheim musical, which runs from October and is directed by Jonathan Kent, will also star Lara Pulver and Kevin Whateley.
Launching the revamped space in July, will be a production of Amadeus by Peter Shaffer, starring Rupert Everett as Salieri, and will be directed by CFT artistic director Jonathan Church.
Following this, Carlos Acosta will choreograph a production of Guys and Dolls in August overseen by US director Gordon Greenberg. With Peter Polycarpou and Sophie Thompson in the cast.
In November, Patricia Routledge will star in Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband, directed by Rachel Kavanaugh.
In the Minerva Theatre, the season will include new work from David Haig and Richard Bean, a debut play by documentary maker Mark Hayhurst and a production of Hugh Whitemore’s Stevie, starring Zoe Wanamaker.
Haig’s play, Pressure, is about two weather forecasters who were hired by US commander Dwight D Eisenhower to advise on the timing of the D-Day landings. It is a co-production with Edinburgh’s Royal Lyceum Theatre, and the cast features Haig and Malcolm Sinclair.
Pitcairn, by Bean, is about the colonisation of the remote South Pacific island from which the play takes its name. It is a co-production with theatre company Out of Joint and will be directed by its artistic director Max Stafford-Clark. It premieres at CFT before transferring to Shakespeare’s Globe in London.
Hayhurst’s play, Taken at Midnight, will star Penelope Wilton and will be directed by Church.
Also in the season, Rosalie Craig will star in the lead role of August Strindberg’s Miss Julie, in a double bill that incudes Shaffer’s Black Comedy. Dervla Kirwan will appear in Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune by Terrence McNally.
CFT artistic director Church said the theatre’s renovation would create more staging options and allow it to present work in repertoire more easily.
“The theatre now has the benefits that every other theatre that operates all year round that was built in the 1950s and 1960s has,” he said. “The stage is now on the same level as the scene dock, and there is improved access between these areas.”
Further details at http://www.cft.org.uk/
Thursday 6th March 2014