News: Casting announced for Mike Bartlett’s new comedy Scandaltown

Full casting has been announced today for Scandaltown, a brand new comedy by Mike Bartlett (Doctor Foster, King Charles III) directed by the Lyric Hammersmith Theatre’s Artistic Director Rachel O’Riordan (Olivier Award winning Killology). The world premiere production runs at the West London venue from 07 April to 14 May with opening night for press on 14 April. Tickets are on sale at www.lyric.co.uk

Scandaltown is a modern restoration comedy and irreverent satire, set in post-pandemic London, full of immorality, political hypocrisy and the machinations of a fame-hungry elite. It brings together a 12-strong cast including Rachael Stirling (The Bletchley Circle; Love, Love, Love – Lyric Hammersmith Theatre) as Lady Susan Climber, Richard Goulding (The Windsors, King Charles III) as Matt Eton and Emma Cunniffe (Queen Anne – RSC) as Aunty Julie and Rachel De Souza. Also confirmed are Cecilia Appiah (The Long Song – CFT) as Phoebe Virtue, Matthew Broome as Jack Virtue in his stage debut, Henry Everett (Antony and Cleopatra – National Theatre, The Memory of Water – Hampstead) as Peter Media OBE, Luke Hornsby (1917, Harlots) as Freddie Peripheral, Thomas Josling (Habeas Corpus – Menier) as Tom Double-Budget, Aysha Kala (BAFTA Breakthrough Brit, The Welkin – National Theatre) as Hannah Tweetwell, Annette McLaughlin (Matilda, Harry Potter and The Cursed Child) as Rosalind Double-Budget and Scrub, Ami Okumura Jones (EastEnders, Wendy & Peter Pan – Leeds Playhouse) as Jenny Bright, and Chukwuma Omambala (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hecuba – RSC) as Sir Dennis Hedge and Kevin the Postman.

Rachel O’Riordan reunites with Mike Bartlett following a critically acclaimed revival of Love, Love, Love which opened in 2020 as part of her debut season as the Lyric’s Artistic Director.  

Mike Bartlett, Writer, said: “I’m so pleased that Rachel’s assembled this amazing cast for Scandaltown. As a provocative play, with contradictory and absurd human beings at its heart, drawing on a restoration form, it’s going to be so much about performance. I can’t wait to start rehearsals.”

Rachel O’Riordan, Director, said: “I am delighted to be directing Mike Bartlett’s new play Scandaltown at the Lyric. Mike is one of our most exciting writers, with a huge heart.  I was so disappointed when we had to cancel the run of Love, Love, Love due to Covid because audiences were having such a good time in our theatre. Mike wrote Scandaltown especially for our beautiful Matcham auditorium – the most beautiful theatre in London. I can’t wait to share this funny, bold new play with our audiences.”

“We are not virtuous, but neither are we cruel. We believe in simply: no shame.” When noble heroine Miss Phoebe Virtue receives worrisome news on Instagram that her twin brother Jack may be endangering his reputation in London Town, she decides she must visit herself, and investigate. Scandaltown is an irreverent satire for our times. Expect the finest couture, rakish behaviour, explicit hashtags and a party that will have all of London talking.

Set Design is by Good Teeth, Costume Design by Kinnetia Isidore, Lighting Design by Paul Keogan, Sound Design and Composition by Simon Slater, Choreography by Malik Nashad Sharpe, Wigs, Hair and Make-up Design by Susanna Peretz, Casting by Amy Ball, Consultant Dr Lloyd (Meadhbh) Houston, and Assistant Director Kwame Owusu.

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