Stage set for Peter Pan to fly in for open-air festival at Roman Theatre in St Albans
- Credit: Tim Morozzo Photography 2021
Rehearsals are also over and Peter Pan will be flying into Herts for the opening of a seven-week theatrical treat in historic surroundings.
The stage is set for The Roman Theatre Open Air Festival in St Albans.
Presented by the Maltings Theatre, the outdoor extravaganza at the Roman Theatre of Verulamium features 14 shows over the course of seven weeks at one open-air venue.
The festival opens on Friday, May 28 and runs until July 11, with a varied programme designed to appeal to the widest audience.
This year’s festival is headlined by productions created and performed by the Maltings Theatre’s in-house company OVO, with Peter Pan, which had to close early at the Alban Arena last December, Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors and The Winter's Tale.
Peter Pan features many of the original cast who performed in the show at the Arena before the theatre was closed in the last lockdown before Christmas.
Felipe Pacheco is the eponymous hero, while Emma Wright plays Mary Darling and Tiger Lily, Flora Squires is Wendy Darling, and Marcus Churchill is George Darling and the swashbuckling Captain Hook.
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Previews of The Comedy of Errors start on June 4 with Shakespeare's play transported to a beachfront bar in award-winning director Matthew Parker's version.
Bar owners Ant and Adriana serve up karaoke laced with fruity cocktail kicks.
When Ant’s long-lost twin brother washes up on shore with his loveable but idiotic mate Dromio, who also happens to be a long-lost twin, a hilarious and anarchic adventure of errors ensues.
The two sets of twins, plus a host of colourful characters, mysterious merchants, late-night lovers, a drag queen and a nun grab the wrong end of the stick (of seaside rock) in a hilarious, helter-skelter comedy of mistaken identity.
The Winter's Tale is co-directed by the Maltings Theatre's artistic director Adam Nichols, who also performs as King Leontes, and Maltings associate director Janet Podd.
“This is such a wonderful play,” says Janet.
“Like so much Shakespeare, it encompasses the human experience and while there are highly comic scenes there are scenes of tragedy, too.”
Adam Nichols added: "The role of King Leontes is an exciting and challenging one for any actor; he's complex and driven, variously described as jealous, villainous, destructive, even childish.
"I've been rediscovering my acting chops with the help of my brilliant co-director Janet Podd, and I'm really enjoying the discipline of acting again.
"The setting of the play's two distinct worlds is going to be so atmospheric at The Roman Theatre – audiences are in for a treat."
OVO will be taking this production of Shakespeare's timeless tragicomedy of obsession and redemption to the Minack Theatre in Cornwall from July 18 to July 28.