Ragtime at Charing Cross – Earl Carpenter and Anita Louise Combe star

RAGTIME Earl Carpenter and Anita Louise CombeWest End and Broadway stars Earl Carpenter and Anita Louise Combe will head the cast of Thom Southerland’s new actor-musician production of the multi-award winning Ragtime.

Carpenter, whose theatre credits include playing the title role in The Phantom of the Opera in the West End and on Broadway, will join Combe (Gypsy at the Savoy Theatre) in the show which is due to begin an eight-week season at the Charing Cross Theatre in October.

The second show in Southerland’s inaugural season at the London venue, Ragtime follows on from the critically acclaimed Titanic and will once again be directed by Southerland and produced by Danielle Tarento, Steven M. Levy, Sean Sweeney and Vaughan Williams.

Carpenter and Combe will head a cast that includes: Simon Anthony (Wonder.land, NT); Bernadette Bangura (professional debut); Anthony Cable (The Phantom of the Opera, Sunset Boulevard West End); Cavin Cornwall (currently playing Caiaphas in Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre); Valerie Cutko (Grand Hotel, Broadway and Southwark Playhouse, Cabaret, West End); Matt Devereaux (Hitler, My Part in His Downfall, Hampstead); Christopher Dickins (Monsieur André in The Phantom of the Opera, West End, War Horse, NT); Tom Giles (Muse of Fire); Joanna Hickman (The Witches of Eastwick, Watermill); Lemuel Knights (professional debut); Rachel Knowles (Spamalot, West End, Betty Blue Eyes, UK tour); Ako Mitchell (Grey Gardens, Southwark Playhouse); Seyi Omooba (professional debut); Kate Robson-Stuart (Betty Blue Eyes, UK tour); Jennifer Saayeng (City of Angels, Donmar); Jonathan Stewart (Guys and Dolls, Savoy Theatre and Phoenix Theatre, Grand Hotel, Southwark Playhouse); Gary Tushaw (currently starring as Joseph Taylor Jr in Allegro at Southwark Playhouse); and child actors Alana Hinge, Samuel Peterson, Ethan Quinn, and Riya Vyas.

The creative team includes orchestrator and musical supervisor Mark Aspinall, choreographer Ewan Jones, set designers Tom Rogers and Toots Butcher, lighting designer Howard Hudson, sound designer Andrew Johnson, costume designer Jonathan Lipman, musical director Jordan Li-Smith and casting director Danielle Tarento.

Based on the 1975 novel Ragtime by E L Doctorow, the show which features music by Stephen Flaherty, lyrics by Lynn Ahrens and book by Terrence McNally, will play the Charing Cross Theatre from Saturday 8 October until Saturday 10 December.

Ragtime premiered in Toronto in 1997 before opening on Broadway the following year. The production ran for 834 performances, winning the Tony Awards for Best Book, Best Original Score and Best Orchestrations and Best Featured Actress in a Musical (Audra McDonald).

A limited West End run followed in 2003 featuring an Olivier Award-winning performance for Maria Friedman. A re-imagined version was staged at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre in 2012.

Angela Thomas

Tickets for Ragtime are available HERE.

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