The first wave of cast for the new stage play sequel of Helen Forrester’s much-loved Twopence To Cross The Mersey has been announced.
The play follows the smash-hit success of Helen Forrester’s Twopence To Cross The Mersey and is being brought to audiences by the team behind both the musical and stage play versions of the award-winning true story.
The Forrester family has been cast, and it’s a warm welcome for three much-loved actors who return to their roles.
Maria Lovelady who received rave reviews for her portrayal in the lead role of Helen Forrester will resume the part. This will be the third time Maria has played Helen. She made her debut in the premiere of the new stage play of Twopence To Cross The Mersey, which ran for three weeks at the city’s Epstein Theatre in 2015 and was followed by two North West tours.
Maria was also given high praise by Helen Forrester’s son Robert Bhatia, who travelled from Canada in 2015 specially to see the new stage play. He described her portrayal of his mother as “superb”.
Emma Dears returns to play Helen’s Mother. Emma performed alongside Maria in the new stage plays of Twopence since 2015. Emma is best known for her West End performances in Les Miserable and Miss Saigon.
Mark Moraghan has recently appeared in the world premiere of new stage comedy Lennon’s Banjo, he will play Helen’s Father. Mark previously played the role of Father in 2007 when Twopence To Cross The Mersey was a musical. Mark is best known for his roles in Coronation Street and Brookside.
Helen Forrester’s son Robert Bhatia said: “I thoroughly enjoyed seeing Twopence To Cross The Mersey as a stage play. The staging was innovative and appropriate to the book. And the cast, led by Maria Lovelady was superb! She was utterly convincing playing my mother!”
Rob Fennah has written both the stage play versions of Twopence To Cross The Mersey and By The Waters Of Liverpool. This next chapter in Helen Forrester’s life story is once again produced by Pulse Records Ltd in association with Bill Elms. The play will be directed by Gareth Tudor Price.
More than 170,000 people have seen Twopence since it was premiered and now the long-awaited sequel visits the theatre where it all began for the original musical at the Liverpool Empire.
By the age of 17, Helen had fought and won two bitter battles with her parents – the first to educate herself, the second for the right to go out to work.
Her parents are as financially irresponsible as ever, wasting money while their children still lack adequate food and clothing. But for Helen, things are looking up as she begins to make new friends and develop some social life outside the home.
By The Waters Of Liverpool takes us to the next chapter in Helen’s life. It’s now 1939, Britain is on the brink of war, Helen is now aged 20 and has never been kissed by a man. That is until she meets a tall, strong seaman. And falls in love.
Rob Fennah, co-producer and writer, said: “I am thrilled that Maria, Emma and Mark are able to resume their roles of Helen, Mother and Father in our new stage play of By The Waters Of Liverpool. Their strong portrayals of the Forrester family really struck a chord, and I know audiences will be delighted to see them in the play.
“Fans of Helen’s books have waited a long time to see this second book brought to life. The new play is as much a labour of love as Twopence was for me. We’re going back to where it all started, the stage of the Liverpool Empire, a place Helen was very fond of and where the musical was first staged in 1994. We’re bringing Helen’s story home.”
By The Waters Of Liverpool by Helen Forrester has sold more than a million books. Now this is your chance to see it come to life on stage in this exciting new stage play adaptation.