The Old Vic is proud to present the world premiere of Girl from the North Country, an electrifying new work from esteemed playwright Conor McPherson along with classic songs from Bob Dylan. Casting is today announced for the premiere production, which is also directed by McPherson and which runs from 10 July to 7 October 2017, with a press night on 26 July 2017.
The full cast are: Sheila Atim (Marianne Laine), Ron Cook (Doctor Walker), Bronagh Gallagher (Mrs Burke), Shirley Henderson (Elizabeth Laine), Ciaran Hinds (Nick Laine), Claudia Jolly (Katherine Draper), Arinzé Kene (Joe Scott), Debbie Kurup (Mrs Neilsen), Kirsty Malpass (Ensemble), Jim Norton (Mr Perry), Tom Peters (Ensemble), Karl Queensborough (Ensemble), Sam Reid (Gene Laine), Michael Shaeffer (Reverend Marlowe), Jack Shalloo (Elias Burke), and Stanley Townsend (Mr Burke).
Duluth, Minnesota. 1934.
A community living on a knife-edge huddle together in the local guesthouse. The owner, Nick, owes more money than he can ever repay, his wife Elizabeth is losing her mind and their daughter Marianne is carrying a child no-one will account for. And, when a preacher selling bibles and a boxer looking for a comeback show up in the middle of the night, things start to spiral beyond the point of no return…
Brought to life by a 20-piece company of actors and musicians, award-winning playwright Conor McPherson beautifully weaves the iconic songbook of Bob Dylan into this new show full of hope, heartbreak and soul.
Also on the creative team are: Rae Smith (designer), Simon Hale (orchestrator, arrangements and musical supervisor), Mark Henderson (lighting), Simon Baker (sound), Alan Berry (musical director), Lucy Hind (movement director) and Joe Murphy (associate director).
Sheila Atim plays Marianne Laine. Recent theatre credits include Shakespeare Trilogy (Donmar Warehouse) and Les Blancs (National Theatre). Other theatre credits include Volpone, Love’s Sacrifice, The Jew of Malta (RSC), Black Lives Black Words – The Interrogation of Sandra Bland (Bush Theatre), Rachel (Finborough Theatre) and Klook’s Last Stand (Park Theatre). Sheila’s television credits include I Live With Models.
Ron Cook plays Doctor Walker. His theatre credits include The Children, Our Country’s Good, The Recruiting Officer, Cloud Nine (Royal Court), Faith Healer, Trelawny of the Wells, Richard II, King Lear, Juno and the Paycock, Glengarry Glen Ross (Donmar Warehouse), The Homecoming (Trafalgar Studios), Henry V (Noel Coward Theatre), Hamlet and Twelfth Night (Wyndham’s Theatre). Ron’s television credits include City and the City, Mr Selfridge, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Silent Witness, Diary of Anne Frank, Dr Who, Funland, The Lost Prince and The Singing Detective. His film credits include Hot Fuzz, The Merchant of Venice, Thunderbirds, 24 Hour Party People, Charlotte Gray, Chocolat, Topsy Turvy and Secrets & Lies.
Bronagh Gallagher plays Mrs Burke. Theatre credits include The Faith Machine, Dublin Carol (Royal Court), Every Good Boy Deserves Favour and War Horse (National Theatre). Film credits include Return to Montauk, Sherlock Holmes, Tamara Drewe, Tristan & Isolde, Last Chance Harvey, The Commitments, Pulp Fiction, Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. Television credits include You Me and the Apocalypse, The Street, The Accused.
Shirley Henderson plays Elizabeth Laine. Shirley’s career spans film, television and theatre; her extensive theatre credits include Shining Souls (The Old Vic), The Maiden Stone, Lions in the Streets (Hampstead Theatre), My Mother Said I Never Should (Royal Court), Entertaining Strangers, The Winter’s Tale, The Tempest (National Theatre), Eurydice (Chichester Festival), Anna Weiss (Whitehall Theatre), Romeo & Juliet (Citizens Theatre) and The Life of Stuff (Traverse Theatre). On screen, Shirley is best known for films Trainspotting, Bridget Jones and the Harry Potter series, and for her roles in television dramas Frozen and Southcliffe, she won the BAFTA Scotland Award for ‘Best Actress’ in both. Other television credits include Happy Valley, Jamaica Inn, Bob Servant Independent, Death In Paradise, Treasure Island, Crimson Petal and the White, Marple: Murder is Easy, Dr Who, The Taming Of The Shrew and Dirty Filthy Love, and her other film credits include Okja, Never Steady, Never Still, Love Song: Wolf Alice, Urban Hymn, The Tale Of Tales, The Caravan, Set Fire To The Stars, Filth, The Look Of Love, Anna Karenina, Everyday, Wild Child and Marie Antoinette.
Ciaran Hinds plays Nick Laine. Ciaran has worked extensively for the Glasgow Citizens Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company, National Theatre, Donmar Warehouse, Gate Theatre and Abbey Theatre, Dublin. Theatre credits include Hamlet (Barbican), The Night Alive, Assassins (Donmar Warehouse), Juno and The Paycock, Burnt By The Sun, Machinal (National Theatre), Closer (National Theatre and Broadway), The Yalta Game (Gate Theatre), Our Few and Evil Days (Abbey Theatre Dublin), Simpatico (Royal Court) and Richard III (Royal Shakespeare Company). Broadway credits include The Crucible, Cat on A Hot Tin Roof and The Seafarer. Film credits include Bleed for This, Silence, Frozen, The Woman in Black, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, The Debt, The Eclipse, There Will Be Blood, Miami Vice, Munich, Phantom of the Opera, Road to Perdition, Veronica Guerin, Calendar Girls, Tombraider II, The Sun of all Fears and Persuasion. Television credits include Game of Thrones, Political Animals, Above Suspicion, Rome, The Mayor of Casterbridge, Jane Eyre and Persuasion.
Claudia Jolly plays Katherine Draper. A recent graduate of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Claudia was recently seen in the BBC adaptation of NW and is soon to appear in the film On Chesil Beach.
Arinzé Kene plays Joe Scott. His theatre credits include One Night In Miami (Donmar Warehouse), Decade (Headlong), Been So Long (Young Vic Theatre), The Lion King (Lyceum Theatre), Daddy Cool (Shaftesbury Theatre) and Torn (Arcola Theatre). Arinzé’s television credits include Crazyhead, Our Girl, Youngers, EastEnders and Casualty. His film credits include Been So Long, The Pass, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Freestyle.
Debbie Kurup plays Mrs Neilsen. Her theatre credits include The Threepenny Opera (National Theatre), The Bodyguard (Adelphi Theatre), Chicago (Cambridge Theatre and Adelphi Theatre), Sister Act (London Palladium), West Side Story (Prince of Wales Theatre London), Tonight’s The Night (Victoria Palace), Rent (Prince of Wales Theatre and UK), Boogie Nights (Savoy Theatre), Anything Goes (Sheffield Theatres and UK tour), Jack and the Beanstalk (Hackney Empire), East (Leicester Curve), Fame (UK tour), Guys and Dolls (Sheffield Theatres), Pal Joey (Chichester Festival Theatre) and Poison (Tricycle Theatre). Debbie’s film credits include 28 Weeks Later, Hollow, Beauty and Lethality.
Kirsty Malpass is part of the ensemble. Theatre credits include Groundhog Day (The Old Vic), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Lord of the Rings (Theatre Royal Drury Lane), Chariots of Fire (Gielgud Theatre), Jerry Springer: The Opera (Cambridge Theatre), The Sound of Music (UK Tour).
Jim Norton plays Mr Perry. Jim most recently appeared on Broadway as Giles Corey in Ivo van Hove’s production of The Crucible. Jim’s other Broadway credits include Of Mice and Men, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Finian’s Rainbow, The Weir and Dublin Carol. His London theatre credits include Hamlet (Barbican), The Night Alive (Donmar Warehouse), Port Authority (Ambassadors Theatre), The Contractor and The Changing Room (Royal Court) and he worked extensively at the National Theatre from 1975 to 1985. He won both an Olivier and Tony Award for his performance as Richard Harkin in The Seafarer. His film credits include Jimmy’s Hall, Water For Elephants, The Eclipse, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, Driving Lessons, Oyster Farmer, Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets, Straw Dogs, Hidden Agenda and Memoirs of an Invisible Man. Television credits include River, Elementary, Stan, Frasier, Poirot and Star Trek: the Next Generation. Jim has most recently finished playing the role of Binnacle in Walt Disney Picture’s feature film, Mary Poppins Returns.
Tom Peters is part of the ensemble. Theatre credits include The Crucible and Dancing at Lughnasa (The Old Vic), Scenes from an Execution, Travelling Light (National Theatre) and Sheppey (Orange Tree Theatre).
Karl Queensborough is part of the ensemble. Theatre credits include Aladdin and Cinderella (Lyric Hammersmith) and Only The Brave (Soho Theatre). Television credits include Casualty and film credits include 13, Leroy and Broken Glasses.
Sam Reid plays Gene Laine. His theatre credits include ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore (West Yorkshire Playhouse) and One Night In November (Belgrade Theatre). Sam’s television credits include Tennison, Codes of Conduct, Astronauts Wives Club, Miss Marple: Greenshaw’s Folly, Hatfields & McCoys, Whitechapel, Endeavour, Spooks, MI-5 and All Saints. His film credits include Limehouse Golem, 2:22, Despite the Falling Snow, Serena, Tigers, The Riot Club, ’71, Belle and The Railway Man.
Michael Shaeffer plays Reverend Marlowe. Theatre credits include All About My Mother (The Old Vic), The Vote (Donmar Warehouse), How to Hold Your Breath (Royal Court), Little Revolution, Mr Burns (Almeida), Godchild (Hampstead Theatre), Table, London Road, Threepenny Opera (National Theatre) and Jesus Christ Superstar (UK Tour). Television credits include SS-GB, Oasis, Taboo, Grantchester and Game of Thrones, and film credits include Rogue One, London Road and Trance.
Jack Shalloo plays Elias Burke. Theatre credits include Groundhog Day (The Old Vic), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Theatre Royal Drury Lane), The Snow Queen (The Nuffield Theatre), A Clockwork Orange (Stratford East Theatre Royal), Goodbye Barcelona (Arcola Theatre) and Our House (Birmingham Rep and Original UK Tour). Jack’s television credits include People Just Do Nothing, Dickensian, The Interceptor, Doctors, Miranda Hart’s New Year’s Eve Sketch Show, The Man Who Loved The Lakes, EastEnders, Out Of Control, Holby City, The Suspicions of Mr Whicher and The Bill. His film credits include Fit, Kick-Off and Bashment.
Stanley Townsend plays Mr Burke. His theatre credits include The Nether, The Alice Trilogy, The Weir (Royal Court), King Lear, Phedre, Gethsemane, Happy Now, Remember This (National Theatre), The Dead (Abbey Theatre), Broken Glass (Tricycle and Vaudeville Theatres) and A View From The Bridge (Royal Lyceum Edinburgh). Stanley’s television credits include Redwater, The Collection, Galavant, The Tunnel II, The Hollow Crown 2, 24: Live Another Day, New Worlds, Toast, Ripper Street 2, Fleming, Quirke – Christine Falls, Fresh Meat, Mad Dogs III, Call The Midwife, An Appropriate Adult, The Shadow Line, Zen, Sherlock Holmes: A Study in Pink, Ashes to Ashes, New Tricks, Foyle’s War and Spooks. His film credits include The Current War, Florence Foster Jenkins, The Voices, One Chance, Standby, The Physician, Lovely Louise, Hilde, Killing Bono, Water’s Rising, Happy Go Lucky, The Tiger’s Tale, Flawless and The Libertine.
Conor McPherson is an acclaimed writer and director. He was born in Dublin in 1971 and attended University College Dublin where he began to write and direct. Stage plays include The Nest, The Dance of Death, Rum & Vodka, The Good Thief, This Lime Tree Bower, St Nicholas, The Weir (Olivier, Evening Standard, and Critics Circle Awards), Dublin Carol, Port Authority, Shining City (Tony Award nominated), The Seafarer (Tony, Olivier and Evening Standard Award nominated), The Veil, The Night Alive (New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, Olivier, Evening Standard and Lucille Lortel Award nominated). Television credits include Quirke (Irish Film & Television Academy Award for Best Drama) and the upcoming programme Paula. For film, Conor wrote and directed The Eclipse (Irish Film & Television Academy Award for Best Script), and has written the screenplays for upcoming films Artemis Fowl, Double Cross and Strangers.
Bob Dylan is one of our culture’s most influential and ground-breaking artists. Born in Duluth, Minnesota in 1941; self-taught on piano, guitar and harmonica, he travelled to New York City in 1961, quickly establishing himself as an explosive performer in the Greenwich Village music scene. More than half a century later, Dylan continues to perform almost 100 concerts each year. He has released more than 50 albums and written over 600 songs. He’s sold more than 125 million records and is the holder of 11 Grammy Awards. His songs have been covered more than 6000 times by artists as diverse as Duke Ellington, Jimi Hendrix, Guns N’ Roses, Stevie Wonder, Bob Marley and Adele. He is also an accomplished visual artist and author, and in 2016 was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature – the first songwriter to receive such a distinction.