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Previewed 5 December 2007, Opened 8 December 2007, Closed 27 January 2008 at the Gielgud Theatre in London
A major revival of David Edgar's astage adaptation of Charles Dicken's Nicholas Nickleby in London, presented in two parts, playing in repertory.
The ebullient narrative, adpated for the stage by David Edgar, follows Nicholas, left penniless on the death of his father, as he escapes the influence of his villainous Uncle Ralph and the tyrannical schoolmaster Wackford Squeers and embarks on a thrilling journey through 1830's England. David Edgar's extraordinary stage adaptation of Dickens' great comic masterpiece became a landmark production on its RSC premiere in 1980. Performed by a company of 27 actors Nicholas Nickleby is presented across two performances, combining to create an experience of rare scope and genuine scale. This two part stage production of Nicholas Nickleby in London promises to be a unique theatrical event not to be missed and there are opportunities to experience this exhilarating spectacle, afternoon and evening, all in one day.
The cast for Nicholas Nickleby in London includes Daniel Weyman as 'Nicholas Nickleby', David Yelland as 'Ralph Nickleby', Abigail McKern as 'Mrs Nickleby', Pip Donaghy as 'Wackford Squeers / Sir Mulberry Hawk', David Dawson as 'Smike', Jane Bertish as 'Mrs Wititterley', Richard Bremmer as 'Newman Noggs', Alison Fiske as 'Miss LaCreevy', Bob Barrett as 'Lord Frederick' and Zoe Waites as 'Fanny Squeers / Madeline Bray'. It is co-directed by Jonathan Church and Philip Franks with designs by Simon Higlett, lighting by Mark Jonathan, music by Stephen Oliver and sound by Matt McKenzie. This critically acclaimed production transfers to London's West End following two seasons at the Chichester Festival Theatre in 2006 and 2007.
"Love, sex and money, poverty and exploitation, hope and despair: Dickens's world is vividly brought to life in David Edgar's adaptation of his 1838 novel... Now the transfer of the Chichester Festival Theatre revival by Jonathan Church and Philip Franks proves that this two-part drama remains a socially-relevant tale for our time... It is also exuberantly, unashamedly theatrical. Franks, Church and their ensemble succeed in balancing grotesquerie with detail and depth, so that every character, from the most eye-catchingly outlandish down to each incidental passerby, muffin-seller or tavern prostitute, suggests an entire existence... Overall, a triumph of theatrical storytelling." The Times
"When David Edgar's adaptation of Nicholas Nickleby was first produced by the RSC in 1980, it became a benchmark for theatrical ambition (it ran at around eight and a half hours), ensemble acting and simplicity of staging. Jonathan Church and Philip Franks's Chichester Festival production is new, but it still feels like a revival of the RSC original. The main difference is that it has been trimmed by two hours, and is none the worse for that. The production is carried by David Yelland as the evil uncle Ralph Nickleby. He is surrounded by a pitch-perfect cast of Dickensian caricatures and gargoyles... This is still a theatrical marathon worth running." The Sunday Telegraph
Nicholas Nickleby in London at the Gielgud Theatre previewed from 5 December 2007, opened on 8 December 2007 and closed on 27 January 2008.