Sara Stewart steps into The Cherry Orchard for Nottingham Playhouse

Nottingham Playhouse artistic director, Giles Croft, has completed casting for his farewell production, Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, which opens on November 3.

Sara Stewart, fresh from the gripping BBC drama Doctor Foster, stars alongside well-known stars of the Playhouse stage – Kenneth Alan Taylor as Firs and John Elkington as Lopakhin.

Anton Chekhov’s last – and widely considered greatest – play, The Cherry Orchard, tells the story of a family on the edge of ruin and a country on the brink of revolution.

When Ranevskaya (Sara Stewart) returns to her country home – with its famous orchard – she is torn between its past and the future.

By turns tragic and funny, this new version by Olivier Award‑winner Simon Stephens, whose adaptation of Chekhov’s, The Seagull, is currently playing in London, is both dynamic and profound.

The cast is completed by Claire Storey, Jamie de Courcey, Graham Butler, Babirye Bukilwa, Jonathan Oliver, Evlyne Oyedokun, Robin Kingsland, Patrick Osborne, Sasha Frost and Rob Goll.

Giles Croft has chosen this masterpiece as his final production – and first Chekhov – as artistic director. He leaves an incredible legacy of productions including Polygraph, Rat Pack Confidential, All Quiet on the Western Front, The Ashes, Arcadia and The Kite Runner.

Giles said: “During my time at Nottingham Playhouse I have been fortunate enough to direct work by writers as varied as Robert Lepage, Henrik Ibsen and Noel Coward.

“So when thinking about what would be my final production I was unsure of where to begin.

“I knew that it had to be a play that I love, that it should be connected with the theme of change and would also present me with a new challenge.

“I have never directed Chekhov. I love The Cherry Orchard and is there a better play about change?”

The Cherry Orchard runs at the Nottingham Playhouse from November 3-18.

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