Joining the previously announced Alex Jennings in Stephen Beresford’s The Southbury Child are Holly Atkins, Josh Finan, Jack Greenlees, Jo Herbert, Phoebe Nicholls, Racheal Ofori and Sarah Twomey. Final casting will be announced shortly. Directed by Nicholas Hytner, The Southbury Child will run at Chichester Festival Theatre from 13 to 25 June 2022, with press night on 17 June and then at the Bridge Theatre from 1 July to 27 August 2022. Set designs are by Mark Thompson with costume by Yvonne Milnes, sound by George Dennis and lighting by Max Narula.
Sharp-witted, wilful and frequently drunk, David Highland has kept a grip on his parish through a combination of disordered charm and high-handed determination. But when his conscience forces him to take a hard line with a parishioner who wants Disney balloons at a family funeral, he finds himself dangerously isolated from public opinion. As his own family begins to fracture, David must face a future that threatens to extinguish not only his position in the town, but everything he stands for.
Stephen Beresford’s very funny new play is a deeply humane exploration of family, faith, tradition and tolerance in a rapidly changing world.
Alex Jennings (David Highland) will make his Bridge Theatre debut in The Southbury Child reuniting him with Nicholas Hytner who has previously directed him in Hymn and Cocktail Sticks, Collaborators, The Habit of Art, The Alchemist, The Winter’s Tale and The Importance of Being Earnest amongst others. He was last on stage in Hansard at the National Theatre where he has worked extensively as well as at the Royal Shakespeare Company. During his theatre career, he has been the recipient of three Olivier awards. His many screen credits include Prince Charles in The Queen, Alan Bennett in The Lady in the Van (alongside Maggie Smith and directed by Hytner), the Duke of Windsor in The Crown, Stephen Frears’ A Very English Scandal and This is Going to Hurt currently being shown on BBC1.
Holly Atkins’ (Joy Sampson) theatre credits include Romeo and Juliet and Helen at Shakespeare’s Globe, The Ballad of Crazy Paola at the Arcola, Scarborough at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and the Royal Court and Summer Begins atSouthwark Playhouse. Her television credits include Home, King Gary, This Country, In the Long Run, Witless, Call The Midwife, Wallander, Criminal Justice, The Sarah Jane Adventures, City Lights, Where the Heart is, Casualty, The Project, Kiss Me Kate and EastEnders. She was most recently seen in Nicholas Hytner’s production of The Book of Dust – La Belle Sauvage at the Bridge Theatre.
Josh Finan’s (Lee Southbury) theatre credits include Peggy for You at Hampstead Theatre, Shook for Papatango Theatre, Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth and The Merry Wives of Windsor for the Royal Shakespeare Company, The Barricade for Theatre 503 and The Nutcracker for Theatre Clwyd. His television credits include The Responder, Doctors and Guerrilla. On film his credits include Shook and Hellboy.
Jack Greenlees (Craig Connor) has been seen in Party at the Criterion Theatre. On television his credits include The Swarm, The Trial of Christine Keeler, Lethal White, Deadwater Fell, In Plain Sight and Penny Dreadfull. On film his credits include She Will, Our Ladies, Outlaw King and Sunset Song.
Jo Herbert’s (Susannah Highland) theatre credits include The Mirror and The Light at the Gielgud Theatre, The Country Wife, Cyrano de Bergerac and For Services Rendered both for Chichester Festival Theatre, Eternal Love for the English Touring Theatre, East of Berlin for the Southwark Playhouse, Three Winters for the National Theatre, Comedy of Errors and The Importance of Being Ernest for Regents Park Theatre, Wild Honey and Hello/Goodbye for Hampstead Theatre, The Game of Love and Chance and Blackbird for Salisbury Theatre, Candida for Theatre Royal Bath, The Faerie Queen International Tour for Glyndebourne, Room Service Included at The Mill At Sonningand As You Like It and Anne Boleyn for Shakespeare’s Globe. Her television credits include Call The Midwife, Unforgotten, The Crown, Loaded, Josh, Casualty 1909, Lewis, Holby City and Home Fires. Herbert’s film credits include Misbehaviour.
Phoebe Nicholls’ (Mary Highland) theatre credits include Scenes from an Execution, Rutherford and Son, An Inspector Calls and Pravda all for the National Theatre, When the Rain Stops Falling and Waste for the Almeida Theatre, Three Women and a Piano Tuner for Hampstead Theatre, The Vortex at the Apollo, The Three Sisters at the Queen’s Theatre and Hysteria at the Royal Court. On television her credits include A Very British Scandal, Chloe, Anatomy of a Scandal, Sticks and Stones, Traitors, Endeavour, Doctor Thorne, Downton Abbey, Fortitude and Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. Her film credits include The Electrical Life of Louis Wain, The Empty Man, Berlin I Love You, Mari, Finding Your Feet and Transformers: The Last Night and Starfish.
Racheal Ofori (Naomi Highland) was previously at The Bridge in Bach & Sons. Her theatre credits include Rare Earth Mettle for the Royal Court Theatre, Three Sisters for the National, Snowflake for The Old Fire Station, Pygmalion for Headlong and West Yorkshire Playhouse, and The Merchant of Venice at Shakespeare’s Globe. Her one-woman shows are Portrait, which played to sell-out audiences at the Edinburgh Fringe prior to a UK Tour and So Many Reasons which ran at Soho Theatre. Her television credits include Big Age, Sliced, Enterprice, In the Long Run and Treadstone. Ofori’s film credits include I Used To Be Famous and Guns Akimbo.
Sarah Twomey’s (Tina Southbury) theatre credits include Venice Preserved, The Provoked Wife, A Christmas Carol and Twelfth Night for the Royal Shakespeare Company, The Young Chekhov Trilogy for Chichester Festival Theatre and the National Theatre, and Mermaid for Shared Experience. Her television credits include The Mind of Herbert Clunkerdunk, The Sandman, Call the Midwife and Kate and Koji. On film her credits include Men, andTwelfth Night.
For the Bridge Theatre Nicholas Hytner has directed Young Marx, Julius Caesar, Allelujah!, Alys, Always, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Two Ladies, Beat the Devil, The Shrine, Bed Among the Lentils, A Christmas Carol, Bach & Sons and The Book of Dust – La Belle Sauvage. In March he will direct Ralph Fiennes in David Hare’s Straight Line Crazy also at The Bridge. Previously he was Director of the National Theatre from 2003 to 2015.