The Park Theatre has revealed initial star casting for world premiere murder mystery Whodunnit [Unrehearsed], presented in association with Avalon, which runs from 15 to 27 July 2019 in London and then transfers to the Edinburgh Festival from 31 July to 26 August.
Every night, a different guest performer will step onstage to join the rehearsed ensemble of a scripted murder mystery play, having attended no rehearsals, read no script, nor received any direction. Armed only with a hidden earpiece to receive instructions, they will endeavour to solve the crime in real time.
An isolated manor, a storm brewing and a stranger at the door. The clichés flow as freely as the suspicious liquor in the library, but this murder mystery spoof has one hell of a twist.
Whodunnit [Unrehearsed] not only features the voices of Sir Ian McKellen and Dame Judi Dench, but also a different celebrity in each performance stepping in as the Inspector, without any rehearsal and without ever having seen the script.
Guests at Park Theatre including: Clive Anderson, Gillian Anderson, John Bishop, Gyles Brandreth, Marcus Brigstocke, Jim Broadbent, Simon Callow, Ronan Keating, Damian Lewis, Maureen Lipman, Joanna Lumley, Juliet Stevenson, Meera Syal, Catherine Tate, Tim Vine and Ruby Wax will all have their lines fed to them live on stage via an earpiece as they attempt to crack the case, avoid the furniture and stagger their way to justice. More guest performers for Park Theatre are yet to be announced.
Commenting on the project, Gillian Anderson said:
“I’m performing at Park Theatre to help raise funds for the charity. With no public subsidy, they need to fundraise over £250,000 a year just to keep the doors open. The monies raised from this production’s higher ticket prices will support their core ambition to present accessible theatre over the coming years and to further their work with the local community. A number of £10 day tickets will also be available. I do hope people will come and enjoy, and reap the benefit of supporting this fantastic cause.”
Tim Vine said: “I’m really looking forward to this unique theatrical experience. To be honest, I’m often on stage with no idea what I’m supposed to be doing and a strange voice in my head, so this ought to be a piece of cake.”
The play will be narrated by the voices of Sir Ian McKellen and Dame Judi Dench. After a two-week run at Park Theatre, Whodunnit [Unrehearsed] will transfer to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Edinburgh guests are yet to be announced.
All guest actors are kindly donating their time to support this special fundraising run, so every penny raised will go towards keeping Park Theatre inclusive and accessible for all. The line-up is subject to last-minute change, and audiences will only discover which VIP stars in each performance when they appear onstage.
Park Theatre artistic director Jez Bond said: “We’re very fortunate that the leading actors in our country understand the power and importance of smaller scale theatres and the challenges they face. Performing across the run are a mixture of those who’ve supported us since the building was a hard-hat site and those who’ve come to know us more recently. I am grateful to everyone who has donated their time to help raise vital funds by performing this show – and am thrilled they’re so up for it!”