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Stafford Festival Shakespeare presents Macbeth – cast announcement

Stafford Festival Shakespeare is delighted to reveal the full cast announcement for this summer’s much-anticipated, authentically medieval production of Macbeth, set to take place once again in the atmospheric surroundings of Stafford Castle.

Taking on the eponymous role of the Scottish tyrant will be star of stage and screen, Nabil Stuart (pictured right). An actor with true Scottish heritage, Nabil has starred in a host of acclaimed theatrical productions, including The Tempest at the Barbican in London, Blood and Gifts at the National Theatre, and Black Watch at the National Theatre Scotland, which won five Oliver awards. He has also appeared in the hugely popular Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks.

Starring opposite Nabil as his “fiend-like Queen”, Lady Macbeth, will be Rosie Hilal (pictured below). Rosie is no stranger to the work of Shakespeare having performed in numerous RSC productions, such as Hamlet, All’s Well That Ends Well and As You Like It, as well as Anthony and Cleopatra and Measure for Measure at Shakespeare’s Globe. She has also appeared in the National Theatre Artistic Director, Rufus Norris’, recent art-film, London Road.

In contrast to the play’s murderous main couple are the honourable characters of Macduff and Lady Macduff played by the respective Daniel Cahill and Ceri-Lyn Cissone. Daniel has worked extensively in the world of physical theatre and is trained in martial arts and parkour. He has numerous National Theatre Scotland credits, including Shift, Small World and The James Plays. Scottish lass Ceri-Lyn is a star of the stage both North and South of the border and was a finalist in the Michael Bryant Award for verse-speaking at the National Theatre. Her credits include a European Tour of The Rocky Horror Show, The Merry Wives of Windsor at the Globe – as well as the New York and LA transfer – and A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Barbican.

“Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn and cauldron bubble”. Prophesising Macbeth’s ascent to the throne will be the three Witches played by Sian Mannifield, Nicola Jo Cully and Mairi Hawthorn. Sian is a Scottish-based actor with numerous theatre credits, including The James Plays for the National Theatre of Scotland. Nicola has worked extensively in theatre and TV and has featured in well-known shows such as Doctors, Taggart and Casualty. Mari is an accomplished actor-musician who recently appeared in the hugely popular HBO TV series, Game of Thrones.

Two familiar faces set for a return to the Castle this summer will be Howard Chadwick and Morgan Philpot, playing Seyton/The Porter and Banquo respectively. Morgan delighted audiences last year during the The Tempest with his performance as the scheming Antonio, and Howard likewise proved a hit in the role of the angry father, Brabantio, for Othello back in 2016.

Elsewhere in the show, King Duncan will be played by Greg Powrie, with his sons Malcolm and Donalbain played by Samuel Pashby and Blair Kincaid respectively. Ewan Somers will take on the role of Ross, David Colvin will play Siward and finally Mathew Tomlinson will star as Angus.

Stafford Festival Shakespeare spokesperson, Thomas Waldron, says:
“What an incredible cast we have lined up for this truly medieval production of The Scottish Play. Indeed, we have tried to keep it very authentic this year and have sought to cast Scottish actors for many of the roles – however, no doubt local audiences will spot a couple of familiar faces from productions past.

Rehearsals get underway in a matter of weeks and all of us at Stafford Festival Shakespeare can’t wait to see how this show is going to shape up. We have some amazing plans in store for audiences this summer so make sure you don’t miss it!

Leading the cast will be the Creative Team made up of the returning, critically-acclaimed Director, Clare Prenton; fresh from his work on the Off-Broadway production of Sweeny Todd, Production Designer Simon Kenny makes his SFS debut this year; and in a slight change to the billing, Craig Adams will be replaced as Music Director by David Hewson, who is well known to local audiences following his work on last year’s Stafford Gatehouse Theatre Summer School production of Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat.

Macbeth will open on Thursday 28th June and run until Saturday 14th July 2018 at Stafford Castle, with tickets available from just £14. Full ticket information can be obtained from the box office on 01785 619080 or by visiting www.staffordfestivalshakespeare.com

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