Opening at Greenwich Theatre 13-31 October (Previews from 7th October) the world premiere of Hugh Salmon’s moving, affecting and humorous debut play Into Battle announces full casting.
TV Favourite Iain Fletcher (The Bill) plays the real-life figure Revd. Neville Talbot who steers audiences through the play based on the true story of a bitter feud at Oxford University.
In 1906, of the fifty-three freshers who went up to Balliol college Oxford, eighteen had been to Eton. By 1910 they had formed an exclusive group, including the future war poets Hon. Julian Grenfell and Patrick Shaw Stuart.
Standing up to the behaviour of the Etonians were socially aware Keith Rae and future England rugby international Ronald Poulton, who were dedicated to improving the lives of the poor and hungry on the back streets of Oxford. By 1912, the feud has polarised Keith Rase and Hon. Billy Grenfell on an individual level.
After an incident between then Billy is sent down for a year, disgracing his aristocratic mother Lady Ettie Desborough. Finally, Into Battle reveals the differences between Keith and Billy, and their destinies are resolved in the face of a far greater adversity.
Iain Fletcher will be joined on stage by Anna Bradley (Florence Smith/Walter Perkins) Alexander Knox (Patrick Shaw Stewart), Gabriel Freilich (Hon. Julian Grenfell) Joe Gill (Keith Rae) Molly Gaisford (Lady Ettie Desborough) Nik Salmon (Hon. Billy Grenfell ) and Sam Barrett (Ronald Poulton-Palmer) and says:
“After a challenging 18 months for theatre I can’t wait to join the amazing cast of Into Battle on stage. It’s truly exciting to be part of a play which tells very human stories to an audience who may not be aware of the fascinating backgrounds of some of these very well-known historical figures”.
James Hadrell, Artistic Director at Greenwich Theatre says: “We are delighted to be hosting the world premiere of Into Battle at Greenwich Theatre. Once in a generation, a new play comes to London which transcends time and place and brings historical events and people back to life on a human level”.
Into Battle unearths a true story that has been buried for over 100 years: a story which shows how the political and social divisions tearing Britain apart were reflected in a ‘bitter feud’ at Balliol College Oxford.