Present Laughter

Andrew Scott to star in Present Laughter at the Old Vic

Sophie Thomas
Sophie Thomas

Initial casting has been announced for the upcoming revival of Noёl Coward's Present Laughter at the Old Vic

Present Laughter is a comedic play that centres around Garry Essendine, a successful comic actor approaching his fortieth birthday. As he prepares to tour Africa with his latest production, he has to deal with his secretary and his wife, as well as rumours of extra-marital relationships that could affect his life and career.

Andrew Scott will play the role of Garry Essendine. He is an Olivier award-winning actor, receiving the outstanding achievement in an affiliate theatre award for his performance in A Girl in a Car with a Man at the Royal Court. More recently, he appeared on stage in Sea Wall at the Old Vic, with a script written specifically for Scott by Simon Stephens as well as the title role in Hamlet at the Almeida Theatre, which later transferred to the Harold Pinter Theatre.

On television, he is best known for playing Moriarty in Sherlock alongside Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman from 2010 to 2017, winning a BAFTA for best supporting actor.

Sophie Thompson joins the cast of Present Laughter, whose recent theatre credits include The Importance of Being Earnest at the Vaudeville Theatre. Luke Thallon who starred in The Inheritance at the Young Vic will also star in the production along with Suzie Toase and Indira Varma.

Artistic director Matthew Warchus, whose previous directorial credits at the Old Vic include A Christmas Carol, Art and The Caretaker will direct Present Laughter. The creative team will also include sound by Simon Baker, lighting by Hugh Vanstone and design by Rob Howell.

On working with the cast for the production, Matthew Warchus said: "I'm delighted to be working with Andrew Scott again (after collaborating on the film Pride), together with what promises to be
a cast of outstanding comic actors". 

Present Laughter is at the Old Vic from 17th June to 10th August. 

Originally published on

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