Cast announced for David Storey's The March on Russia

1 August 2017

Alice Hamilton (Visitors and Eventide, Bush Theatre) returns to the Orange Tree following Robert Holman’s German Skerries to direct Sarah Belcher (Medea, Almeida; Twelfth Night, Filter/RSC), Ian Gelder (The Treatment, Almeida; Kevan Lannister in four series of Game of Thrones), Colin Tierney (The Father, Theatre Royal Bath/Tricycle), Connie Walker (Death of a Salesman, Northampton/tour) and Sue Wallace (Husbands and Sons, Emil and the Detectives, National Theatre).

Major post-war playwright David Storey died in March 2017. Born in Wakefield, he was the son of a Yorkshire miner and became a distinctive voice of working class Britain, especially through productions at the Royal Court Theatre in the 1960s and 70s.

Previewing from 7 September, this is the first major production of his play The March on Russia since premiering at the National Theatre in 1989.

As the Pasmores prepare to mark their sixtieth wedding anniversary, their three children surprise them by returning home to celebrate.

A moving evocation of a family and a way of life retreating into old age, retirement bungalows and modern middle class life. Storey’s play is written with profound affection for a family struggling with change but bound together by love.

Orange Tree Artistic Director Paul Miller: “I have long admired David Storey’s unique dramatic voice: that distinctive mix of strength and sensitivity as he charts post-war Britain’s uneasy social transitions. So I’m proud we’re working with Up in Arms to present one of his tenderest, most well-observed plays. Their aim, to make work that is "honest, human, affecting, revealing”, makes Alice Hamilton, Up in Arms’ joint Artistic Director, the ideal person to direct this revival. We had long planned this collaboration prior to Storey’s recent death and we hope now it will stand as a fitting tribute to an extraordinary talent.”

David Storey‘s (1933 – 2017) plays include In Celebration, Home, The Contractor and The Changing Room. He is also well known as a novelist. His first novel This Sporting Life became a 1963 film directed by Lindsay Anderson with Richard Harris and Rachel Roberts. Subsequent novels include Radcliffe, Pasmore, A Temporary Life, Edward, A Serious Man and the Booker Prize-winning Saville. Born in Wakefield, he was the son of a Yorkshire miner and became a distinctive voice of working class Britain.

Alice Hamilton and Up in Arms return to the Orange Tree following their critically acclaimed production of Robert Holman’s German Skerries with a play that typifies the warmth and human detail of Up In Arms’ work. Her work for Up in Arms as Co-Artistic Director with Barney Norris includes his plays Visitors (Arcola, Bush and tour), Eventide (Arcola and tour), While We’re Here (Bush and tour) and Echo’s End (Salisbury Playhouse). Other theatre includes Orca and Orson’s Shadow (Southwark Playhouse). She has twice been nominated for the Offie for Best Director (Visitors and Eventide).

Sarah Belcher’s theatre includes Medea (Almeida); Twelfth Night (Filter/RSC); The Accrington Pals (Royal Exchange); The Tempest, The Comedy of Errors (RSC); Beachy Head (Analogue); Six Characters in Search of An Author (Headlong); The Elephant Man (Sheffield Theatres). TV includes Holby City, Kiss of Death, Obsession, The Musketeers, Tales from the Old Bailey, Lead Balloon, Twelve Dancing Princesses and Talk to Me.

Ian Gelder returns to the Orange Tree following Martin Crimp’s Definitely the Bahamas. Other theatre includes Racing Demon (Theatre Royal Bath); The Treatment (Almeida); Human Animals, The Low Road, Mouth to Mouth, Fireface (Royal Court); Gods and Monsters (Southwark Playhouse); Titus Andronicus (Shakespeare’s Globe); Roots (Donmar Warehouse); King Lear (Almeida); The Power of Yes, Henry IV Parts I and II, His Dark Materials, Stuff Happens (National Theatre); The Sound of Music (West End). TV includes Snatch, Riviera, Ripper Street, Game of Thrones (4 series), Mr Selfridge, Endeavour, Psychoville, The Fades, Silent Witness, Robin Hood, Torchwood and Fallen Angel.

Colin Tierney’s theatre includes The Odyssey, The Misanthrope (Liverpool Everyman/English Touring Theatre); The Father (Theatre Royal Bath/Tricycle); Britannia Waves the Rules (Royal Exchange); The Last Days of Troy (Royal Exchange/Shakespeare’s Globe); Betrayal, Hamlet (Sheffield Crucible); Tartuffe (English Touring Theatre); Hedda Gabler (Theatre Royal Bath/tour). TV includes Vera, Silent Witness, Holby City, DCI Banks, New Tricks, Waterloo Road, The Walk, Island at War, Serious and Organised and Foyle’s War. Films include Nowhere Boy.

Connie Walker’s theatre includes Death of a Salesman (Northampton Royal/tour); A Month of Sundays (Queen’s, Hornchurch); Sister Winnie (Birmingham Rep/tour); Seeing the Lights, Kes, Top Girls (New Vic, Stoke); To Kill A Mockingbird (Open Air Regent’s Park/tour/Barbican); As You Like It, Hay Fever (West Yorkshire Playhouse); Separate Tables (Chichester). TV includes Holby City, Coronation Street, Vera, Scott and Bailey, Silent Witness, Casualty, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, New Tricks, Blackpool, MIT and The Vice.

Sue Wallace’s theatre includes Husbands and Sons, Emil and the Detectives (National Theatre); Billy Liar, Pygmalion, Everybody Loves a Winner (Royal Exchange); Untold Stories (National Theatre/West End); Hedda Gabler (Northampton Theatres); Hobson’s Choice (Crucible, Sheffield); Season’s Greetings (Theatre Royal Windsor); Merry Wives of Windsor (Shakespeare’s Globe/UK and US tour); East Is East (Birmingham Rep); Hay Fever (Chichester). TV includes DCI Banks, In the Club, Quick Cuts, Shameless, In the Flesh, Trollied, The Royal, Housewife 49, New Street Law, Samuel Johnson, Coronation Street, In the Blood, A&E, Dinnerladies and Common As Muck. Films include I Give It A Year.

£15 previews start on 7 September.

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