The cast has been announced for the world premiere of a new stage adaptation of Jack Rosenthal’s classic British film, The Knowledge.
Steven Pacey, Celine Abrahams, James Alexandrou, Jenna Augen, Louise Callaghan, Ben Caplan, Michael Chance, Alice Felgate and Fabien Frankel have joined the show which runs at Charing Cross Theatre from 4 September to 11 November.
It will be directed by Maureen Lipman who not only played one of the lead roles in the film but is also the widow of Jack Rosenthal. It has been adapted for the stage by Simon Block.
The 1979 movie, which also starred Nigel Hawthorne, follows the hilarious struggles of four Londoners as they attempt to better themselves by attempting the fearsome “Knowledge” – the process of becoming a London black cab taxi driver.
Standing between them and the coveted Green Badge is the eccentric Mr Burgess, the examiner, also known as “The Vampire”, who is on an obsessive mission to maintain standards.
Mr Burgess will be played in the stage show by Steven Pacey who has an extensive stage and TV career, most recently appearing in the acclaimed Royal Shakespeare Company productions of Love’s Labour’s Lost and Much Ado About Nothing at the Theatre Royal Haymarket.
James Alexandrou is best known for playing Martin Fowler in EastEnders for 11 years but has more recently been more active on stage. Jenna Augen’s career includes winning Best Actor in a Supporting Role at the UK Theatre Awards for Bad Jews at the Theatre Royal Bath, St James Theatre and Arts Theatre in London.
Ben Caplan was series regular PC Peter Noakes in Call the Midwife and Walter “Smokey” Gordon in the six-part HBO series Band of Brothers.
The Knowledge is produced by Vaughan Williams and Steven M Levy. Set design is by Nicolai Hart-Hansen, costume design by Jonathan Lipman and sound design by Andrew Johnson.