An exceptional cast has been assembled for Rachel O’Riordan’s world premiere production of Gary Owen’s major new version of The Cherry Orchard. The cast consists of some of Wales’ finest acting talent and names and faces familiar from TV and film.
Simon Armstrong plays Gabriel. Simon recently appeared as Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth Night at Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre. Simon’s extensive work on stage also includes performances for Shakespeare’s Globe, Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory and Theatr Clwyd. Game of Thrones aficionados may recognise him as Qhorin Halfhand, the Nights Watchman who sacrifices his life to Jon Snow. Simon’s work for TV also includes Doctors, The Hollow Crown II and Coronation Street.
Denise Black, one of the best known faces on British TV, has been cast as Rainey, the landowner whose way of life is threatened by impending financial disaster. Denise is best known for her long running role as hairdresser Denise Osbourne in Coronation Street and for her performances in Russell T Davies’ classic dramas Queer as Folk and Cucumber. Denise won a Manchester Evening News Award for her performance in Roots at the Royal Exchange Theatre.
Matthew Bulgo, who is well known to Cardiff audiences through his associations with Sherman Theatre, The Other Room and National Theatre Wales, takes the role of businessman Alun Lewis who has plans for Rainey’s orchard and estate.
Rising star Morfydd Clark plays Rainey’s youngest daughter Anya. Morfydd was tipped by the Guardian as a rising star of 2017 following her performance as Cordelia alongside Glenda Jackson in King Lear at the Old Vic and Les Liaisons Dangereuses at the Donmar. Morfydd appeared in the Royal Court Theatre’s production of Gary Owen’s Violence and Son. On the big screen, Morfydd can be seen in Love and Friendship opposite Kate Beckinsale and with Maxine Peake in The Falling.
Hedydd Dylan has worked with some of the world’s most important directors including Blanche McIntyre, Jonathan Kent and Declan Donnelan. She won the Ian Charleson Award for her performance as Eliza in Pygmalion in 2009. Hedydd recently starred as Constance Chatterley in the Sheffield Theatres production of Lady Chatterley’s Lover which then toured. Hedydd plays Rainey’s adopted daughter Valerie.
We are delighted to welcome Richard Mylan back to Sherman Theatre following his acclaimed performance in Gary Owen and Rachel O’Riordan’s most recent collaboration Killology earlier this year. Richard takes the role of Ceri, Anya’s former socialist tutor.
Alexandria Riley is one of Wales’ brightest emerging talents. She returns to Sherman Theatre following her much loved performance as Kitty in Alan Harris’s How My Light is Spent this spring. Alexandria takes the role of Dottie, a maid.
Rachel O’Riordan has said “I am so proud to have a cast of this calibre on our stage, featuring some of the most exciting and vibrant talent. I can't wait to work with these artists and bring this wonderful new work to life for our audience here in Cardiff”.