John Partridge head and shoulders

John Partridge and Charlie Stemp lead an all-star cast in comedy 'Rough Crossing'

Bill Kenwright presents the long-awaited return of Rough Crossing written by Academy, Tony and Olivier award-winning writer Tom Stoppard (Shakespeare in Love, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, The Real Thing, Arcadia) and directed by acclaimed director Rachel Kavanaugh (The Wind in the Willows, Half a Sixpence).

The star cast is led by John Partridge, winner of this year’s Celebrity Masterchef. John is best known to TV audiences as the suave and charismatic Christian Clarke in ‘EastEnders’. He is one of musical theatre’s most prolific leading men, having played in major West End musical hits such as ‘Chorus Line’, ‘Chicago’, and in Bill Kenwright’s recent ‘La Cage Aux Folles’.

Joining John fresh from ‘Snow White’ at the London Palladium is one of musical theatre’s brightest upcoming stars, Olivier-award nominee Charlie Stemp, who has triumphed on Broadway starring opposite Bette Midler in ‘Hello, Dolly!’ and in London in ‘Half a Sixpence’. He will play Bert in the 2019 revival of ‘Mary Poppins’. They will be joined by West-End star Issy van Randwyck (Fascinating Aïda), comedy TV favourite Matthew Cottle (Game On, The Windsors), Holby City’s Rob Ostlere and Simon Dutton who portrayed Simon Templar in ‘The Saint’.

Rough Crossing plays at The Lowry from Mon 18 to Sat 23 February 2019.

Two famous but desperate playwrights are stuck in an ocean liner headed for New York, feverishly trying to rehearse their latest show before reaching land, and opening night. But they are constantly distracted by their delicate composer’s attempts to end it all, having overheard his lover confess her feelings to the leading man.

Add an absurdly unorthodox waiter, a mistimed lifeboat drill and a vanishing glass of brandy and soon the sharp Atlantic winds turn to world-class gales of laughter as these colourful characters become tangled up in a typically Stoppardian string of absurd events.

The creative team is completed by: Colin Richmond (Set and Costume), Ben Cracknell (Lighting) and Dan Samson (Sound).

Freely adapted from Fernec Monlár’s Játék A Kastélyban.