It’s been announced that Imelda Staunton and Maxine Peake are to star in the regional transfer of Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads, playing in Sheffield and Leeds this November.
Transferring from the Bridge Theatre in London to Bennett’s home county of Yorkshire, a double-bill of monologues from the iconic Talking Heads series will perform to socially distanced audiences at the Sheffield Crucible from 9th to 11th November, before running at Leeds Playhouse from 12th to 14th November.
Reprising their roles from the London run, Imelda Staunton performs A Lady of Letters, directed by Jonathan Kent; whilst Maxine Peake takes on Miss Fozzard Finds Her Feet, helmed by Sarah Frankcom. The monologues are presented live on stage after being broadcast on BBC earlier this year, with the same actors and creative team making the transfer from screen to stage.
Sheffield Theatres’ Artistic Director Robert Hastie said: “One positive consequence of the pandemic has been greater collaboration and a powerful sense of our interconnectivity as theatres and theatre-makers. I’m thrilled that thanks to the staunch support of Alan Bennett and our friends at The Bridge, and a commitment by two of Britain’s finest and best-loved performers to playing theatres outside London, Sheffield audiences returning to the Crucible this autumn will be able to enjoy these timeless monologues by one of Yorkshire’s greats.”
Leeds Playhouse Artistic Director James Brining said: “It is wonderful that these highly acclaimed actors are willing to support regional theatre in this way – bringing their talent to the Playhouse stage and their support to our cities… Alan Bennett is, of course, a Leeds icon and we are grateful to him and the Bridge Theatre for enabling these very special performances to take place.”
As with performances at the Bridge Theatre, Alan Bennett has agreed to waive his royalty fee for the subsequent performances in Sheffield and Leeds.
Talking Heads feature design by Bunny Christie, lighting by Jon Clark, video designs by Luke Halls, sound by Gareth Fry and music by George Fenton.
The announcement of Talking Heads at Sheffield Crucible comes as the theatre announced plans for their Together Season earlier today.