Poignant war drama Bully Boy comes to Royal & Derngate

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A moving play featuring a star cast comes to Northampton’s Royal & Derngate, as its next Made In Northampton production takes to the stage.

Actor Anthony Andrews, best-known from TV series Brideshead Revisited, heads the cast in the theatre’s Made In Northampton co-production of Bully Boy on its Royal stage from tomorrow, before transferring to London.

Written by broadcaster and writer Sandi Toksvig, this thought-provoking drama follows Falklands War veteran Major Oscar Hadley, who is sent to a combat zone to probe allegations of severe misconduct by Eddie Clark, a young squaddie from Burnley and part of a self-styled ‘Bully Boy’ unit of the British army.

As the interrogation develops, the two men bond as they try to come to terms with the horrors they have both experienced at war.

Anthony Andrews, who gained national recognition for his role as the charming but fatally flawed Sebastian Flyte in the TV adaptation of Brideshead Revisited and was most recently seen as Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin in film The King’s Speech, plays the Major, with the role of Eddie taken by Joshua Miles.

Bully Boy is a poignant exploration of post war trauma, providing an insight both into the minds of soldiers, and into their treatment by society when they return.

Bully Boy will be directed by David Gilmore and Patrick Sandford. David Gilmore is Artistic Director of the new St James Theatre, opening this autumn in central London.

After its run in Northampton, the play will transfer to the St James Theatre launching its inaugural season.

Internationally acclaimed director David Gilmore has directed more than a dozen West End productions, including Beyond Reasonable Doubt and The Resistible Rise Of Arturo Ui, and Olivier Award-winning productions of Defending The Caveman and Daisy Pulls It Off, along with the long-running production of the musical Grease.

Patrick Sandford (Bully Boy, Nuffield Theatre Southampton) was winner of TMA Award for Best Director for his productions of The Winter Wife and Much Ado About Nothing at the Nuffield Theatre.

A Royal & Derngate co-production with Lee Dean (following on from recent successes with End Of The Rainbow and Ladies In Lavender), Charles Diamond, Daniel Schumann and St James Theatre, Bully Boy can be seen in Northampton from Friday, August 24 to Saturday, September 15.

Tickets priced from £28 to £13 can be booked now by calling Box Office on 01604 624811 or www.royalandderngate.co.uk.