The production will begin performances in the West End next month.

(c)Manuel Harlan

Rehearsal images have now been released for the upcoming West End transfer Mark Evan’s Dickens mash up Bleak Expectations, which will begin performances at the Criterion Theatre on the 3rd May 2023.

The stage production based on BBC radio 4 comedy will see an A-list guest star stepping into the role of Sir Philip Bin – the full  performance schedule is as follows: 3- 7 May: Nina Wadia, 9-14 May: Dermot O’Leary, 16-21 May: Sally Phillips, 23-28 May: Robert Lindsay, 30 May – 4 June: Sue Perkins, 6-11 June: Julian Clary, 13-18 June: Adjoa Andoh, 20-25 June: Craig Ferguson, 27, June – 2 July: Lee Mack, 4-9 July: Stephen Mangan, 11-16 July: Jo Brand, 18-23 July: Tom Allen, 25-30 July: Jack Dee , 1-6 August: Alexander Armstrong, 8-13 August: Stephen Fry, 15-20 August: Ben Miller, 29 August – 3 September: Nish Kumar. 

(c) Manuel Harlan

Meanwhile, the full cast will include: Ashh Blackwood, Shane David-Joseph, J.J. Henry, John Hopkins, Dom Hodson, Serena Manteghi, Marc Pickering, Rachel Summers, Conor Dumbrell, Eric Mallett and Emily Waters.

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!

(c)Manuel Harlan

As well as being written by Mark Evans, the creative team behind the production includes: Director Caroline Leslie, Designer  Katie Lias, Lighting Designer Andrew Exeter, Composer Tom Piggott Smith, Sound Designer  Ella Wahlström , Movement Director Joyce Henderson and Casting Directors  Lucy Jenkins & Sooki McShane.

It is being produced in the West End by Anthology Theatre Productions, Glass Half Full Productions, Patrick Gracey, David Wolstencroft, and David Mirvish, John Yonover, Ricardo Hornos / Tomas Rottemberg, Richard Winkler / Dawn Smalberg, in association with Act Productions, TC Beech, Marianne Benton and Scott Delman / Florence Sloan.

Bleak Expectations will run at the Criterion Theatre from the 3rd May until the 3rd September. To book tickets click here.


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