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Casting announced for Ragtime the Musical and A Midsummer Night's Dream at Regent's Park Open Air Theatre

Regent’s Park
Open Air Theatre

  • Casting announced for Ragtime the Musical and A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre
  • Sunday Events including music, comedy and film are announced for 2012 season
  • Crazy for You nominated for three Olivier awards
  • £20.12 ticket prices during the period of the Olympics for all performances from 25 July – 12 August
From today, rehearsals are underway for the 2012 season at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre. With over 130,000 visitors each season, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre is now an essential part of summer in the city and, in 2012, with the eyes of the world on London, a destination for visitors from around the world.

Celebrating this unique year, the theatre is presenting a repertory season of two major productions.
Playing in repertory from 18 May – 8 September 2012, Timothy Sheader directs Ragtime, a contemporary musical based on the novel by E.L. Doctorow; Olivier Award nominated Javier de Frutos is choreographing. Matthew Dunster is directing Shakespeare’s most magical of plays A Midsummer Night’s Dream from 2 June – 5 September 2012.

Each company consists of 26 actors, 20 of whom will appear in both productions.

Tamsin Carroll plays Titania (Dream) and Emma Goldman (Ragtime).  Antipodean Tamsin recently played Nancy in Oliver! at Theatre Royal Drury Lane. Recently seen in Sheffield’s production of Company and the Donmar Warehouse production of Passion, David Birrell plays Thesues (Dream) and Father (Ragtime). 

Harry Hepple, who recently played the title role in Pippin at the Menier Chocolate Factory, plays Qunice (Dream) and Younger Brother (Ragtime).  Following his performance as Piggy in the Open Air Theatre’s production of Lord of the Flies, George Bukhari plays Bottom (Dream), and Christopher Colquhoun, best known for his on-screen character Simon Kaminski in Casualty and Holby City, plays Oberon (Dream). See notes for Editors for full cast listing.

Ragtime the Musical has a book by Terrence McNally, music by Stephen Flaherty and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens. This powerful musical, set at the turn of the 20th century, unites three families separated by race and destiny. The 1996 Broadway production won four Tony Awards including Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score.

Designer Jon Bausor will work with Sheader and Dunster on Ragtime the Musical, following his acclaimed set designs for Lord of the Flies and The Crucible. Laura Hopkins will design the costumes for both productions. Laura’s previous credits include Shoes (Sadlers Wells) A Delicate Balance (Almeida) and Black Watch (National Theatre Scotland).

Artistic Director, Timothy Sheader, says: “What has proved exciting at Regent’s Park over the past few years are productions that embrace scale, both physically and in their narrative.  The titles for 2012, each with their own particular ambition, are united in their exploration of space, light and the changing atmosphere of theatre in the open air.”

Sheader and Executive Director, William Village, have overseen four seasons at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, each of which has, in turn, broken the record for attendance and Box Office takings. Their productions of Hello, Dolly! (2009) and Into the Woods (2010) both won the Olivier Award for Best Musical Revival with Hello, Dolly! also picking up the Evening Standard Award for Best Musical.
Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre’s 2011 production of Crazy for You has received three nominations for the 2012 Olivier Awards including Best Musical Revival, Best Costume Design for Peter McKintosh and Best Theatre Choreography for Stephen Mear. The production transferred directly to the West End, where it played until 17 March. 115,494 people saw the show which ran for a total of 30 weeks across both venues.  

Beyond the Park, Timothy Sheader will direct and Liam Steel will co-direct Stephen Sondheim’s Into The Woods at New York’s Delacorte Theater, Central Park, this summer. Based on the 2010 Olivier Award-winning Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre production, this new Public Theater production will feature an entirely American cast.

Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre’s Sunday Events programme for 2012 includes Urban Comedy in the Park with Eddie Kadi and guests (24 June), Comedy Store Players (1 July), Jimmy Carr and guests (8 July), Stacey Kent (15 July) and Daniel Kitson with Gavin Osborn (22 July). Film screenings include Pans’ Labyrinth (19 August), Moulin Rouge! (26 August) and Edward Scissorhands (2 September).

Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre will offer a special pricing structure during the period of the Olympics, for all performances from 25 July – 12 August 2012. All tickets will be available for £20.12 when booked before the end of April 2012.

Public booking is now open.

LISTINGS

Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre 2012 season:

Ragtime the Musical
Director Timothy Sheader
Set Designer Jon Bausor
Costume Designer Laura Hopkins
Choreographer Javier de Frutos
Musical Director Nigel Lilley
Lighting Designer James Farncombe
Orchestrator Chris Walker
Sound Designer Nick Lidster and Ian Dickinson for Autograph
Casting Director Pippa Ailion
Fight Director Kate Waters
18 May – 8 September 2012
First preview: 18 May
Press night: 28 May

A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Director Matthew Dunster
Set Designer Jon Bausor
Costume Designer Laura Hopkins
Composer Olly Fox
Movement Director Charlotte Broom
Lighting Designer James Farncombe
Casting Director Pippa Ailion
Fight Director Kate Waters
2 June – 5 September 2012
First preview: 2 June
Press night: 11 June
No matinees on 23 May, 2 June, 6 June, 20 June or 27 June
No performances on 30 May – 1 June inclusive or 27 July
There will be an additional matinee of A Midsummer Night’s Dream on 21 June and 26 July, and an additional matinee of Ragtime on 28 June.

Ticket prices
£22.50 - £42.50 for both productions
£5 off regular prices during previews if booked before the end of April. From 1 May, £2 off regular prices for previews
For all performances from 25 July – 12 August all tickets will be £20.12 when booked before the end of April 2012.
Box Office: 0844 826 4242
Online Bookings: www.openairtheatre.com

SUNDAY EVENTS
URBAN COMEDY IN THE PARK with Eddie Kadi and guests
24 June
Tickets:  £35.00 & £27.50*
COMEDY STORE PLAYERS
1 July
Gates 6.15pm / Performance 7.45pm      
All tickets £21*
JIMMY CARR and guests
8 July
All tickets £25*
STACEY KENT
15 July
Gates 6.15pm / Performance 7.45pm      
All tickets £21*
DANIEL KITSON with GAVIN OSBORN
22 July 
All tickets £12*
PAN’S LABYRINTH screening (15)
19 August
Gates 6.45pm / Performance 8.15pm      
Tickets: £18.50 & £16.50*
MOULIN ROUGE! screening (12A)
26 August
Gates 6.45pm / Performance 8.15pm      
Tickets: £18.50 & £16.50*
EDWARD SCISSORHANDS screening (12A)
2 September
Gates 6.45pm / Performance 8.15pm      
Tickets: £18.50 & £16.50*
* £1 booking fee per ticket for telephone and online bookings.
Please note: for film screenings, proof of age may be required. No refunds will be given to those refused admittance. For guidance on film classifications visit bbfc.co.uk.
A full performance schedule is available from www.openairtheatre.com

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