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Less Than Kind

by Terence Rattigan

Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford: Box Office 01483 440000
and UK Tour

This critically acclaimed comedy will be at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre from Tuesday 14 to Sat 18 Feb 2012 prior to an 8 week UK Tour.

In the cast are James Wilby (Sir John Fletcher), Sara Crowe (Olivia Brown), Caroline Head (Diana Fletcher), David Osmond (Michael Brown), Katie Evans (Polton), Michelle Morris (Miss Dell). It is directed by Adrian Brown, with design by Amy Yardley, costumes by Suzi Lombardelli and lighting by Howard Hudson. It is produced by Planet Theatre Productions Ltd by arrangement with The Yvonne Arnaud Theatre Guildford.

Less Than Kind is the original 1944 play which was extensively rewritten for Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne with the title ‘Love in Idleness’ / US title ‘O Mistress Mine’. It was the first Rattigan production to celebrate his Centenary Year (1911 – 1977). It had a sell out season at Jermyn Street Theatre. The play is now published in a new Rattigan collection by Nick Hern.

The plot concerns Michael Brown, an idealistic socialist 17 year old who on his return from five years’ evacuation in Canada during World War Two, is horrified to find Olivia, his widowed mother living with Sir John Fletcher, a married Tory MP and industrialist. The play centres on Olivia’s anguish as she is torn between her love for her son and for her lover.

Terence Rattigan wrote 25 stage plays, plus numerous one-act plays, radio, television and film scripts. These include The Browning Version, The Winslow Boy and Separate Tables. Some of his films were The Prince and the Showgirl which currently features in ‘My Week with Marilyn’, The VIPs and The Yellow Rolls Royce. His plays are continually performed worldwide.

James Wilby’s most recent credits include ITV’s ‘The Secret Diary of a Call Girl’ with Billy Piper. He was in Robert Altman’s ‘Gosford Park’ and will be seen in the ITV series ‘Titanic’ with Sophie Winkleman in April. Award winning actress Sara Crowe has recently played Lady Frugal in ‘City Madam’ at the RSC. West End roles include in ‘Calendar Girls’ and ‘Bedroom Farce’. She was in ‘Four Weddings and A Funeral’ and her many TV appearances include shows with Jo Brand, Harry Enfield and Rory Bremner. David Osmond was in ‘The History Boys’ at the National. He was in Craig Revel Horwood’s Award winning production of ‘Spend, Spend, Spend’ at the Watermill Newbury and was in the tour of ‘Lark Rise To Candleford’ with Sara Crowe.

Director Adrian Brown received an Emmy Award for the TV version of ‘The Belle of Amhurst’ with Claire Bloom. He has directed for television and theatre throughout his career. Recently he has directed ‘Wild Oats’, ‘The School For Wives’ and ‘The Spanish Tragedy’.

Tues 14 – Sat 18 Feb 2012 UK Tour to Sat 7 April
Running time 2 hrs 20 mins

2 February 2012