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Jamie Lloyd is to direct a one-off gala event at the Harold Pinter theatre later this month to raise money for the UN Refugee Agency UNHCR.
The cast for the evening, titled Whither Would You Go, includes Bertie Carvel, Lee Evans, Martin Freeman, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, Wunmi Mosaku, James Norton, Jack Whitehall, and Olivia Williams. Actor Jay Abdo, who is a refugee of his native Syria, will also appear at the event. More casting is to be announced.
Whither You Would Go? Will be held at the Harold Pinter Theatre on Sunday 22nd October, with all profits from ticket sales to go to UNHCR.
The event will pair scenes from Shakespeare’s work, which will be read by the cast, with real-life stories from refugees around the world. It is inspired by the Bard’s speech from ‘The Book of Sir Thomas More’, which was written as a pleas for tolerance during the London riots of 1517.
Director Jamie Lloyd said: “Whither Would You Go? uses the words of William Shakespeare to highlight our shared humanity. When we focus on what we all have in common, we can start a conversation. With more than 65m forcibly displaced people in the world – the highest levels ever recorded - we should be talking and we should be acting.”
The event was created by Ella Smith and Emma West, who first held the production in Los Angeles to a sell-out audience in March, and plan further shows in New York and Sydney.