Producers today have announced that Caroline Leslie’s production of Mark Evans’ glorious comedy mash-up Bleak Expectations will open in preview at the Criterion Theatre from 3 May. The production will have a press night on 18 May and performances will run until 3 September.
This stage adaptation of the award-winning BBC Radio 4 comedy of the same name, will feature each week a very special guest star in the role of Sir Philip (“Pip”) Bin.
Among those confirmed so far to make an appearance are: Tom Allen, Adjoa Andoh, Alexander Armstrong, Jo Brand, Jack Dee, Stephen Fry, Nish Kumar, Lee Mack, Stephen Mangan, Ben Miller and Sue Perkins.
Adjoa Andoh said: “I was excessively fond of this presentation on the wireless and cannot wait to glory in the misadventures of Pip Bin Esquire and his hapless band of acolytes. Bridgerton/Smidgerton – here is the pony for this game dame…”
Jo Brand said: “Bleak Expectations is the motto by which I have always lived my life, so delighted I can continue to live the dream.”
Stephen Fry said: “I’m so excited about this coming gig that I simply can’t keep any solid food down. Sounds a bit grim, but I only throw up for really prestige projects. I heaved slightly before my last appearance on the Graham Norton Show, and pacing nervously backstage at the Platinum Jubilee Party at the Palace last year I regurgitated as much as a full serving of Rice Krispies. But this Bleak Expectations guest slot already has me spewing colossal arcs of sick every morning. A really good sign.”
A full schedule of dates for these appearances will be released at a later date.
Bleak Expectations follows young Pip’s extraordinary exploits with sisters Pippa and Poppy plus best friend Harry Biscuit as they attempt to escape the calculating clutches of the dastardly Mr Gently Benevolent, defeat the hideous Hardthrasher siblings, and deflect disaster at every turn!
Will evil be vanquished by virtue? Can love triumph over hate? Escape with this joyfully anarchic comedy featuring barbarous boarding schools, contemptible conspiracies, roaring romances, devilish disguises, and definitely, probably, hopefully, a happy ending!
Full casting for the production will be announced soon. And tickets to the run are on sale now, starting at £15 with over 16,000 tickets available across the run at £30 or under.