Star line-up for musical and major acclaim for Sheffield Theatres

Francesca Annis who will be appearing in The Company at the Crucible Theatre, Nov 29 2011 to Jan
Francesca Annis who will be appearing in The Company at the Crucible Theatre, Nov 29 2011 to Jan

AS Sheffield Theatres basks in the acclaim for its current production, Othello, starring Clarke Peters and Dominic West, and a clutch of nominations for this year’s TMA Theatre Awards, it has announced an outstanding line-up for Company, the Christmas musical, which opens at the Crucible at the end of November.

Glamorous star of stage and screen for four decades, Francesca Annis, will make her Crucible debut in her first musical since the Seventies.

Daniel Evans, artistic director, Sheffield Theatres

Daniel Evans, artistic director, Sheffield Theatres

After directing Othello, Daniel Evans will cross to the other side of the footlights to take the lead role of Robert alongside some familiar faces to Crucible audiences including Claire Price, Anna-Jane Casey and Samantha Spiro, plus a first appearance by TV comic Lucy Montgomery of Tittybangbang and Bellamy’s People.

In his capacity as the theatre’s artistic director, Evans can also take pleasure in five nominations for productions over the past year in the Theatrical Management Association (TMA) Theatre Awards UK announced this week.

Me and My Girl, last year’s Christmas musical, is in the running for Best Musical Production and Best Performance in a Musical for Jemima Rooper’s portrayal of Sally.

Claire Price (mentioned above) has been nominated in the Best Supporting Performance category for her portrayal of Sylvia in Alexi Kaye Campbell’s The Pride.

Erica Whyman, who directed February’s co-production with Northern Stage of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, is a contender for Best Director while Natasha Chivers and Lizzie Clachlan are nominated for their design of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days in the Crucible Studio.

“We are thrilled that our work has been recognised with so many nominations for this year’s Theatre Awards,” says Evans.

“We have enjoyed a remarkable year and I am very proud of the work we have produced here in Sheffield and the fact that hundreds of thousands of people have come through our doors to experience musicals, new writing and classic British and American drama.

“As we prepare to mark the Crucible’s 40th anniversary this November, the news of these nominations gives us another reason to celebrate!”

Othello is very much part of the success and will be seen by more than 31,000 people. The success of the production has resulted in an additional performance being scheduled, although this performance sold quickly and is now at capacity.

Tickets are in such high demand that customers are being encouraged to contact the Box Office on the day of the performance to check for last-minute returns.

The box office is also busy selling tickets for Company which runs from November 29 to January 7.

Directing Stephen Sondheim’s revered musical about love and marriage is Jonathan Munby whose previous Crucible credits include Bird Calls and The Comedy of Errors.