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Casting announced for the world premiere of Old Fools at Southwark Playhouse

Frances Grey and Mark Arends

Casting news

CASTING has been announced for the world premiere of Old Fools. Writtten by Tristan Bernays and directed by Sharon Burrell, it runs at Southwark Playhouse from Wednesday, March 14 to Saturday, April 7, 2018.

Old Fools is a surprising, touching and often humorous tale about a couple, one of whom is living with Alzheimer’s, and their enduring efforts to hold their relationship together through the years.

Mark Arends plays Tom, with Frances Grey as Viv.

Mark Arends played the title role in Hamlet, receiving a commendation in the Ian Charleson Awards, directed by Kelly Hunter at Trafalgar Studios. His credits elsewhere include A Dream Play, The UN Inspector, The Cat in the Hat and the Beast in Beauty and the Beast (National Theatre), Two Gentlemen of Verona (RSC), Early Bird (Royal Court) and Winston Smith and Marianne Dreams (Almeida Theatre).

Frances Grey recently played Hermione in The Winter’s Tale (Lyceum Theatre). Her other theatre credits include Alan Aykbourn’s Neighbourhood Watch (Tricyle Theatre), Dear Uncle (UK tour and New York), Relocated (Royal Court Theatre) and Platonov (Almeida Theatre). On TV, she was DS Kate Beauchamp in all three series of Messiah and she will next be seen as Lydia Gould in BBC1’s adaptation of Agatha Christie’s Ordeal By Innocence.

Tristan Bernays said: “My grandpa had Alzheimer’s and my biggest fear about growing old is the same may happen to me. We all know somone who’s been affected by Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. Maybe it will happen to us one day. I wrote Old Fools to confront this fear head on – yes, it’s a play about the disease, but more importantly it’s about the people behind the disease. How we cope when someone we love disappears little by little. How we must never forget the wonderful person they once were – even if they are not there any more.”

Old Fools has movement direction by Lucie Pankhurst and lighting design by Peter Small. Sound designer and composer is Christopher James Ash, and casting director is Sophie Parrott.

Read more about Old Fools.

Image: Frances Grey and Mark Arends. Photo credit: Lara Genovese @ Naiad Photography