Full Cast Announced for Great Expectations

Great Expectations Cast announcement

Mercury Theatre, led by Creative Director Ryan McBryde, have announced the full cast for their upcoming production of Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. Adapted by Gale Childs Daly, McBryde directs Stanton Wright as Pip, alongside Bessy Ewa, Jim Fish, Gareth Kennerley, Sam Lupton and Emily Pollet.

Following the childhood and young adult years of a blacksmith’s apprentice, Dickens’ much loved protagonist Pip comes into a large fortune from a mysterious benefactor and moves to London where he enters high society. Great Expectations opens 17 May, with previews from 12 May, and runs until 27 May 2023.

Charles Dickens’ best-loved novel is brought to life on stage in this thrilling adaptation from Gale Childs Daly, directed by Mercury Theatre’s Creative Director, Ryan McBryde.

Pip, a blacksmith’s apprentice and orphan, dreams of becoming a London gentleman. When his wish is granted by a mysterious benefactor, his life becomes one extraordinary encounter after another. He is plunged into a world of dark secrets and cruel twists of fate, where beautiful girls are used as weapons, and nothing is more important than knowing who you are and remembering where you came from.

A compelling and dramatic treat for a new generation of theatre lovers.

Director: Ryan McBryde
Designer: Libby Todd
Lighting Designer: Rajiv Pattani
Sound Designer/Composer: Stefan Janik
Movement Director: Chihiro Kawasaki
Casting Director: Natalie Gallacher c/o Pippa Ailion Casting
Assistant Director (Birkbeck Placement): Emmy Briggs

Ryan McBryde is the Creative Director of Mercury Theatre. His productions for the Mercury include The Comedy of Errors, Aladdin, Baskerville, Oliver!, Moll Flanders and Pieces of String (nominated for UK Theatre Award for Best Musical Production and won Best New Musical at the Stage Debut Awards). Other recent credits include Romeo and Juliet (Theatre Trier, Germany), Faust, 1984 (Alte Schauspielhaus Stuttgart), Love on the Links, Before the Party, Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, Aladdin, Jack and the Beanstalk (Salisbury Playhouse), The Invisible Man (Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch), Saturday Night Fever, Angus, Thongs and Even More Snogging (West Yorkshire Playhouse), The Who’s Tommy (European tour), A Day at the Racists (Finborough Theatre/Barking Broadway), The House of Mirrors and Hearts (Arcola Theatre), Lia’s Guide to Winning the Lottery (Bridewell Theatre) and Terie Vigen (Royal Concert Hall).

Charles Dickens (1812-1870) was an English writer and social critic. He is regarded by many as the greatest novelist of the Victoria era. His most famous novels, many originally published in serial format, include Oliver Twist (1839), The Old Curiosity Shop (1841), A Christmas Carol (1843), David Copperfield (1850), Bleak House (1853), Little Dorrit (1857) and A Tale of Two Cities (1859). Among his accomplishments, he has been lauded for providing a stark portrait of the Victorian-era working class, helping to bring about social change.

Gale Childs Daly is a playwright, director, teacher, text coach and actor. A graduate of the Goodman School of Drama at the Art Institute of Chicago (now DePaul University), Daly has worked at the Goodman Theatre, the Alley Theatre, the Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival, the Great River Shakespeare Festival, and the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts, among others. As a playwright, she has also adapted The Secret Garden, The Story of Opal and The Lament for Ignacio Sanchez.

Stanton Wright plays Pip. His theatre credits include Twelfth Night (RSC), The Winter’s Tale (National Theatre), All or Nothing (Ambassadors Theatre/UK tour), Romeo and Juliet (Stafford Gatehouse Theatre), Orlando, Pictures of Dorian Gray (Jermyn Street Theatre), Beauty and the Beast (Rose Theatre, Kingston), The Lion in Winter (English Theatre Frankfurt), Sleeping Beauty (Liverpool Everyman), Lord of the Flies (The Courtyard, Hereford), Take Me Here by the Dishwasher (Barbican Theatre) and This Moose Belongs to Me (Unicorn Theatre).

Gareth Kennerley plays Narrator 1. His theatre credits include Trouble in Butetown (Donmar Warehouse), Othello, The Corn is Green, War Horse, Saint Joan (National Theatre), Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Palace Theatre), The Tragedy of Macbeth (Almeida Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Australian Shakespeare Company at Kew Gardens), Crystal Clear (Old Red Lion Theatre), House and Garden (Watermill Theatre), Five Guys Chillin’ (King’s Head Theatre), Carmen (Stephen Joseph Theatre), Sweeney Todd (Dundee Rep), Doctor Faustus, The School for Scandal (Greenwich Theatre), Fiddler on the Roof (Sheffield Crucible), Under Milk Wood (Tricycle Theatre) and The Pendulum (Jermyn Street Theatre). For film, his credits include My Policeman.

Sam Lupton plays Narrator 2. His theatre credits include Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Avenue Q, Beyond Therapy, The Ladykillers, Little Shop of Horrors (UK tours), Wicked (Apollo Victoria Theatre), The Last Five Years (Bolton Albert Halls), Spring and Port Wine (Oldham Coliseum), Starting Here, Starting Now (The Pheasantry, Chelsea), Single Sex, Galka Motalka (Royal Exchange Theatre), Love on the Dole, A Streetcar Named Desire and The Hired Man (Bolton Octagon). For television, his credits include This England.

Emily Pollet plays Narrator 3. Her theatre credits include Stick Man (Soho Theatre), Hay Fever (UK tour), The Fox (English Theatre Frankfurt), Whisper (Royal Court Theatre), Jekyll and Hyde (Perth Theatre), One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (New Vic Theatre), Twelfth Night, Scenes from an Execution, Danny Crowe Show, Dumbstruck, Peter Pan, Cinderella (Dundee Rep Theatre), I See Myself As a Bit of an Indiana Jones Figure (Old Red Lion Theatre) and Havisham (Battersea Arts Centre). For television, her credits include Emmerdale as series regular Gail Williams.

Bessy Ewa plays Narrator 4. Her theatre credits include & Juliet (Shaftesbury Theatre), Back to the Future: The Musical (Adelphi Theatre) and Next Thing You Know (Garden Theatre).

Jim Fish plays Narrator 5. His theatre credits include Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Palace Theatre), The Winter’s Tale, King Lear, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe (RSC), 4:48 Psychosis, Two, Gold Dust (Deafinitely Theatre), Seven Jewish Children (Hackney Empire) and The Tempest (Nottingham Playhouse). For film, his credits include The Brits are Coming.

Great Expectations runs at the Mercury Theatre from Fri 12 – Sat 27 May 2023. 

Book tickets: mercurytheatre.co.uk/event/great-expectations.

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