Thursday, 21 May 2015

First casting announced for Flare Path tour

Philip Franks, Olivia Hallinan, Leon Ockenden and Alastair Whatley will lead the cast of the 2015 national tour of Terence Rattigan’s Flare PathJustin Audibert directs with further casting to be announced.

The Flare Path tour will open on 18th August at Devonshire Park Theatre in Eastbourne before visiting Richmond, Bath, Malvern, Exeter, Cambridge, Salisbury, Winchester, Ipswich, Coventry, Liverpool and Guildford with further dates to be announced. 

Based on Rattigan’s experiences as a tail gunner during World War II, Flare Path paints an evocative portrait of life in wartime Britain for the life-and-death existence of the RAF bomber crews, and their wives and sweethearts who were left waiting their return.

Set in 1942 against a backdrop of heartache and quiet bravery, Flare Path tells the story of former actress Patricia, the wife of RAF pilot Teddy, whose marriage is tested to the limits by the surprise arrival of Patricia’s ex‐lover and Hollywood idol Peter Kyle. An unexpected and dangerous mission over Germany puts Patricia at the centre of an emotional conflict as unpredictable as the war in the skies.

Flare Path will have Set and Costume Design by Hayley Grindle, Lighting Design by Alex Wardleand Sound Design by Dom Bilkey

Most recently seen in London’s West End in 2011, in a production directed by Trevor Nunnstarring Sheridan Smith and Sienna Miller, this major revival of Flare Path comes from the producers behind the current touring production of Birdsong.

Meet The Cast

Philip Franks, who will play Squadron Leader Swanson, is perhaps best-known for his television roles as Charley in The Darling Buds of May and Sergeant Craddock in Heartbeat, as well as Tom Pinch in Martin Chuzzlewit and Richard in Bleak House. Recent theatre credits includes UK tours of The History Boys and The Rocky Horror Show. Philip has played many leading roles for the Royal Shakespeare Company including Bertram in All’s Well That Ends Well (directed by Trevor Nunn) and the title role in Hamlet (directed by Roger Michell).

Olivia Hallinan will play Patricia Graham. Olivia’s numerous television credits include Laura Timmins in Larkrise To Candleford, Kim in the award-winning series Sugar Rush, Ellie Allard in Girls in Love and Liddy Blakeman in Murder in Suburbia. Recent theatre credits include Olga Prozorov in Three Sisters (Southwark Playhouse), Lotty in Lotty’s War (UK Tour) and Justine in Herding Cats (Hampstead Theatre and Theatre Royal Bath). 

Leon Ockenden, who will play Peter Kyle, is best known for his television roles as Prince Serge De Bolotoff in Mr Selfridge, Hector Reid in Waterloo Road, Dr Chris Oakley in Heartbeat and Sam Taylor in Family Affairs. Recent theatre includes Mat in Muswell Hill (Orange Tree Theatre), various roles in The Merchant Of Venice and As You Like It (both for Lamb Players) and Terry Fordham in Plague over England (Duchess Theatre).

Alastair Whatley, who will play Teddy Graham, is currently playing Evans in the UK tour of Birdsong (Birdsong Productions/ Original Theatre Company). Other recent theatre roles include Jerome in Three Men in a Boat and The Reverend Lionel Toop in See How They Run (both for Original Theatre Company), and the title role in Henry V (South Hill Park). Alastair is also the Artistic Director of the Original Theatre Company. 

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