NEWS: Richard Emerson leads cast of Gershwin musical Strike Up The Band at Upstairs at the Gatehouse

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Casting has been announced for director Mark Giesser’s production of George and Ira Gershwin’s madcap musical hidden gem Strike Up The Band which runs at London’s Upstairs at the Gatehouse from 6 to 31 March 2019, with a press night on 8 March.

Richard Emerson plays ‘typical self-made American businessman’ Horace J. Fletcher. His recent credits include Chess at the ENO, Alain Boublil’s Manhattan Parisienne at The Other Palace and How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying at Wilton’s Music Hall.

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He is joined by Paul Biggin (founding member of sketch group Late Night Gimp Fight), Beth Burrows (Looking for Gatsby, Sirens of the Silver Screen), Charlotte Christensen (The Divide, Old Vic Theatre), Robert Finlayson (The Phantom of the Opera, Her Majesty’s Theatre), David Francis (Les Misérables international tour), Sammy Graham (It’s Only Life, Union Theatre), Nicholas McBride (Code 2021, Secret Studio Lab), Adam Scott Pringle (Newsrevue, Canal Cafe Theatre) and Pippa Winslow (The Sound of Music UK tour).

Written with George S. Kaufman in 1927, the original script for Strike Up the Band was rewritten by Morrie Ryskind in 1930. This production presents the original, with the dark satire on America’s war-mongering over a trade deal re-established.

In 1927, Horace J. Fletcher is a typical self-made American businessman. His cheese factory dominates the market, he influences the White House, and he’s secured his business future by agreeing to marry his daughter, Joan, to his factory manager. He does have one problem. Switzerland has the audacity to protest America’s heavy new tariff on imported cheese.

Fletcher convinces the US government to declare war, backing it with his bucks. Jim Townsend, a newspaperman, suspects all may not be wholesome, but he and Joan fall for each other. Will making the world safe for American cheese be more than just a walk in the Alps?

Director and producer Mark Giesser has written, directed and produced extensively in both Off-Broadway and London Fringe venues. Recent productions include his adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s classic short story The Lady With A Dog, the UK premiere of Alan Alda’s Radiance: The Passion of Marie Curie and the 60th anniversary UK revival of the stage play of Gigi.

Also in the creative team are musical director Bobby Goulder, lighting designer William Leighton, set designer Camille Etchart, costume designer Giulia Scrimieri and choreographer Orley Quick. Strike Up The Band is presented by Alces Productions.

Strike Up the Band runs from 6 to 31 March 2019 at Upstairs at the Gatehouse, Highgate Village, London N6 4BD, with performances Tuesdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm and Sundays at 4pm. Tickets are priced £16-£20. Phone 020 8340 3488 or CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE!

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MyTheatreMates publishes a selection of daily press releases sent to us by publicists of the relevant show or theatre. We are not responsible for any inaccuracies contained within these materials.

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