Joining Ralph Fiennes, who leads the company as Prospero in Trevor Nunn’s Theatre Royal Haymarket Company production of William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, are Nicholas Lyndhurst as Trinculo, Chris Andrew Mellon (Sebastian), Michael Benz (Ferdinand), Tom Byam Shaw (Ariel), Jim Creighton (Adrian), Ian Drysdale (Francisco), Elisabeth Hopper (Miranda), Andrew Jarvis (Gonzalo), James Simmons (Alonso), Giles Terera (Caliban), Julian Wadham (Antonio) and Clive Wood (Stephano) as well as Steven Butler, Eke Chukwu, Meline Danielewicz, Gisele Edwards, Hayley Ellenbrook , Grahame Fox, Charlie Hamblett, Jami Reid-Quarrell and Itxaso Moreno.
The Tempest, the third production in the Trevor Nunn Season, previews at the Theatre Royal Haymarket from 27 August, with press night on 6 September and is booking until 29 October 2011. Set and costume designs are by Stephen Brimson Lewis, with lighting by Paul Pyant, sound by Paul Groothuis and music by Shaun Davey. The Tempest is produced by the Theatre Royal Haymarket Company, Duncan C Weldon, Paul Elliott & Terri and Timothy Childs.
Almost certainly Shakespeare’s last play, The Tempest can lay claim to being the first ever work of magic realism. Marooned and left to die on a remote island, Prospero can command spirits, create apparitions and manipulate the elements. By using his magic, he assembles his enemies to take revenge on them, and in the process awakens in Miranda, his teenage daughter, her first experience of love. The theme of reconciliation gives immense emotional force to Shakespeare’s farewell to the stage.
Ralph Fiennes was last at the Theatre Royal Haymarket playing the title role in Brand. His extensive theatre credits include the title role in Oedipus and Jung in The Talking Cure for the National Theatre, Faith Healer at Dublin’s Gate Theatre and on Broadway, God of Carnage at the Gielgud Theatre, Julius Caesar at the Barbican and on tour as well as many productions for the Almeida Theatre including the title roles in Hamlet, Ivanov, Richard II and Coriolanus, and, for the Royal Shakespeare Company, Edmund in King Lear, Henry VI in The Plantagenets, and Troilus in Troilus and Cressida. His multi award-winning film career includes The Constant Gardner, Sunshine and Schindler’s List, as well as the English Patient, The Duchess, End of the Affair, Quiz Show and The Reader. More recently he made his mark as one of literature’s most terrifying villains, the evil Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter series of films and was nominated for an Emmy and a Golden Globe for his performance in HBO’s bio-pic Bernard and Doris. In 2009 he filmed roles in Clash of the Titans, Cemetery Junction, Nanny McPhee 2 and the final instalments of the Harry Potter films. In 2010 he directed and starred in a feature film of Shakespeare’s tragedy, Coriolanus which he also produced. The film was invited to premiere In Competition at the 2011 Berlin Film Festival and will open at the end of 2011.
Nicholas Lyndhurst is best known for his roles in the award-winning BBC series Only Fools and Horses and Goodnight Sweetheart. His other television credits include Butterflies, The Two of Us, The Piglet Files, Gulliver’s Travels, After You’ve Gone and, most recently, Rock and Chips. His theatre credits include Straight & Narrow at the Aldwych Theatre, The Foreigner for the Albery Theatre, Harding’s Luck for Greenwich Theatre andTrial Run at the Oxford Playhouse. Most recently he received great critical acclaim when he starred as Norman in Ronald Harwood’s The Dresser at the Duke of York’s Theatre. His film credits include Endless Nights, Bequest To The Nation, Bullshot, Gunbus and Lassie.
Tom Byam Shaw graduated from Guildhall in 2010. His theatre credits include Salome for Hampstead Theatre and Les Parents Terribles for the Donmar Warehouse at the Trafalgar Studios. His film credits include Grand Street directed by Lex Sidon. His television credits include A Room with a View and The Bill.
Elisabeth Hopper returns to the Theatre Royal Haymarket to play Miranda having made her professional stage debut playing a courtier in Trevor Nunn’s current production, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.
Chris Andrew Mellon is currently playing The Player in Nunn’s production of Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. His other recent theatre credits include Aspects of Love, directed by Trevor Nunn and La Cage aux Folles, directed by Terry Johnson, both for the Menier Chocolate Factory. He was a member of the Reduced Shakespeare Company for two years, appearing in The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) and The Complete History of America both at the Criterion Theatre.
Julian Wadham’s West End theatre credits include That Face at the Duke of York’s Theatre and Plenty at the Albery Theatre. He has worked extensively for the National Theatre, most recently playing Don Pedro in Much Ado About Nothing. For the Royal Court his many credits include Serious Money. His film roles include Madox in Anthony Minghella's The English Patient, William Pitt in Nicholas Hytner's The Madness of King George as well as Keep the Aspidistra Flying, Maurice, The Secret Agent and Wah Wah as well as the forthcoming War Horse and Iron Lady. His numerous television credits include Foyles War, My Boy Jack and Downton Abbey.
Clive Wood was last at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in Trevor Nunn’s production of Flare Path. His extensive list of credits for the Royal Shakespeare Company includes the title role in Henry IV as well as Bolingbroke in Richard II, Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth Night, Claudius in Hamlet and MacDuff in Macbeth. On television his credits include Land Girls and Waking the Dead and on film, Treasure Island and Buster.
Trevor Nunn was the longest-serving Artistic Director and Chief Executive of the Royal Shakespeare Company (1968 to 1986). During that time he directed most of the Shakespeare canon, as well as Nicholas Nickleby and Les Misérables. He returned to the RSC to direct King Lear and The Seagull. From 1997 to 2003 he was Director of the National Theatre where his 21 productions included award-winning revivals of Troilus and Cressida, The Merchant of Venice, Summerfolk and The Cherry Orchard, as well as Oklahoma!, My Fair Lady and Anything Goes. He has directed the world premieres of Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia, Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, The Coast of Utopia and Rock 'n' Roll, and of Cats, Starlight Express, Aspects of Love, Sunset Boulevard and The Woman in White by Andrew Lloyd Webber. His more recent theatre work includes Hamlet and Richard II at The Old Vic, Timon of Athens and Skellig for the Young Vic, The Lady From the Sea for the Almeida, Scenes from a Marriage for the Belgrade, Coventry, A Little Night Music for the Menier Chocolate Factory, in the West End and on Broadway, Cyrano de Bergerac for Chichester Festival Theatre, Inherit the Wind for The Old Vic and Birdsong at the Comedy Theatre.
Previously, as Artistic Director of the Theatre Royal Haymarket Season Trevor Nunn has directed Flare Path and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.