It has been announced that Gwen Taylor will star as Lady Bracknell in the 2018 UK tour of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. 

Gwen Taylor as Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest%2c credit Manuel Harlan.jpg
Gwen Taylor as Lady Bracknell. (c) Manuel Harlan. 

Beginning on the 24th January 2018 at the Yvonne Arnaud theatre in Guildford, the production will be directed by The Original Theatre Company’s Artistic Director, Alastair Whatley.

Gwen Taylor is best known for her roles such as  the title role in the ITV sitcom Barbara, as well as Anne Foster in Coronation Street and Peggy Armstrong in Heartbeat. Her previous stage credits include Calendar Girls (UK Tour), the title role in the national tour of Shirley Valentine, Top Girls (Royal Court and New York), and Gertrude in Sir Peter Hall’s production of Hamlet (London’s Gielgud Theatre and national tour).

Meanwhile, Susan Penhaligon will be taking on the role of Miss Prism in the new production of Wilde’s classic play. Her  stage credits include currently appearing in the new UK tour of Cabaret as well as appearing in productions of George Bernard Shaw’s Mrs. Warren’s Profession, Agatha Christie’s Verdict and Oscar Wilde’s Lord Arthur Saville’s Crime.

Further casting for the UK tour has yet to be confirmed.

The much loved comedy follows Jack Worthing’s endeavours to marry Algernon’s cousin, the beautiful Gwendolen. But first he must convince the fearsome Lady Bracknell of his respectability. Wilde’s classic play looks at the clash of town and country in a story of romance, identity, perambulators and capacious handbags.

The production will feature set and costume designs by Gabriella Slade, sound and music by Giles Thomas and lighting by Alan Valentine. The UK tour is produced by Tom Hackney for The Original Theatre Company.

After completing its run at the Yvonne Arnaud theatre, the production will then visit:

5 – 10 February                       Courtyard Theatre, Hereford  

13 – 17 February                     Theatre Royal Plymouth

20 – 24 February                     Belfast Grand Opera House 

27 February – 3 March            Bath Theatre Royal  

5 – 10 March                           Theatre Royal Winchester 

13 – 17 March                         Manchester Opera House

20 – 24 March                         Salisbury Playhouse 

27 – 31 March                          Lichfield Garrick Theatre

3 – 7 April                                Churchill Theatre, Bromley

17 – 21 April                            York Theatre Royal

24 – 28 April                           Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne

For more information about the production visit: