Peter Gill, playwright and theatre director
Uncle Vanya
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Uncle Vanya programme cover painting by Basil BlackshawUncle Vanya

by Chekhov, in a version by Frank McGuiness

Field Day Theatre Company

Derry The Guildhall February 20-25 1995
Dublin The Gate Theatre February 27-March 4
Cork The Opera House March 6-8
Tralee Siamsa Tire March 9-11
Clare Scarriff Community College March 13
Galway Convent of Mercy March 14
Castlebar The Linenhall Arts Centre March 15
Sligo Hawk's Well at the Town Hall March 16-18
Belfast Grand Opera House March 20-25
Ballycastle Sheskburn Recreation Centre March 27
Larne The McNeill Theatre March 28
Armagh St Patrick's Hall March 29
Donaghmore Bardic Theatre March 30
Coleraine Riverside Theatre March 31 & April 1
London Tricycle Theatre April tbc
An Arts Council of Northern Ireland, An Chomhairle Ealaion (Arts Council), and Derry City Council funded tour.

Learning in Russian

For Stephen

I have a niece who prays for love, convinced in the end God will speak and save this place, should it be worth the salt of salvation. Do I believe it? What have I to lose? This is all I own. A run down estate, that abacus, my fingers and my thumbs, and the knowledge my labour was thankless. Sore labour it was. Sore sorrow it brought. Still they cling to the estate, fingers, thumbs, as if its fields were Braille, but I'm not blind, nor Russian either. I am not Russian. This I'll tell myself when harvest's gathered. A good harvest, but not mine. I'm let know that. Though I toiled in the barren office where fingers and thumbs, those tools of my trade, planted flax and potatoes, and I smell of linseed — forget it, no laments. What's done is done. I'll return to the abacus. Fingers, thumbs. The run down estate? Still beautiful. Mine.

Frank McGuinness Uncle Vanya 20 February 1995
Marina, an old nurse Helena Carroll

Helena Carroll, Uncle Vanya, 1995Trained at the Webber-Douglas School in London. In her early career appeared at many repertory and regional theatres, including the Citizens' Glasgow and Southport Rep. She toured for the Arts Council in Priestley's When We Are Married and was cast in three London plays and the film Midnight Episode by the age of twenty. Theatre: With the Dublin Players, toured in the United States in plays by Wilde, Shaw and Synge. Went to live in New York, appearing in many Broadway plays including Separate Tables, Oliver!, Pickwick, Little of Alben, Something Different, Design for Living, Private Lives (with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton), and The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man in the Moon Marigolds, which also visited Washington and the Gate Theatre, Dublin. Other theatre in the USA includes The Hostage, Juno and the Pay cock, Man's Man, Nicholas Nickleby, The Playboy of the Western World, and Fallen Angels, and she was co-producer of The Irish Players, a New York based company. Later at the Gate Theatre, Dublin, appeared in MacLiammoir's Prelude in Kasbeck Street. Television includes: Backstairs at the Whitehouse, General Hospital, Edge of Night. Films include: The Dead, Love Affair (starring Warren Beatty), and The Jerk.

Astrov, a doctor Enda Oates

Enda Oates, Uncle Vanya, 1995Has worked in Irish theatres for the past ten years. Theatre includes: The Corsican Brothers, Big Maggie, Madigan's Lock, Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas, Colours, The Devil's Disciple (Abbey Theatre, Dublin), Blinded by the Light, Happy Journey (Peacock Theatre, Dublin), Juno and the Paycock (Gate Theatre Company, touring to Jerusalem and Broadway), Jacques Brel is Alive and Well. He has worked with independent Irish companies, including Rough Magic, Field Day Theatre Company and the Passion Machine's production of Paul Mercier's Studs. In London: The Plough and the Stars (with Judi Dench, Young Vic). Was Associate Producer on Edward Farrell's production of The Country Boy (toured Ireland). Television includes: playing Rev. George Black in Glenroe, City Limits, Remington Steele, Errors and Oversions, Small World, Against All Odds, Fools of Fortune, A Man of No Importance, Braveheart.

Vanya Stephen Rea

Stephen Rea, Uncle Vanya, 1995Born in Belfast. Started acting with the Abbey Theatre, Dublin. Theatre in London includes Shadow of a Gunman (Mermaid Theatre), Miss Julie (Lyric, Hammersmith, and Duke of York's), High Society (Victoria Palace). He played Trofimov in Peter Gill's production of The Cherry Orchard at the Riverside Studios. Has appeared in many plays at the Royal Court including Endgame and Freedom of the City, and at the Royal National Theatre including The Playboy of the Western World, Comedians, The Shaughraun and Piano. He is co-founder of Field Day Theatre Company and has acted in all Field Day productions with the exception of Three Sisters which he directed. Field Day Theatre Company performances include: Translations, The Communication Cord, Double Cross, Pentecost, Making History, Saint Oscar, The Madame MacAdam Travelling Theatre, and The Cure at Troy, which he also directed. Recent theatre includes Someone Who'll Watch Over Me by Frank McGuinness (Hampstead Theatre, West End and Broadway; nominated for a Tony). Television includes: Four Days in July, Lost Belongings, Scout, Small Stages: Saint Oscar and Hedda Gabler. Film includes: Angel, Loose Connections, The Company of Wolves, The Crying Game (nominated for Academy Award for Best Actor), Angie, I Says, Princess Caraboo, and Interview with the Vampire. Most recently: Prêt a Porter, All Men Are Mortal, and Citizen X, The Company of Wolves, The Crying Game (nominated for Academy Award for Best Actor), Angie, I Says, Princess Caraboo, and Interview with the Vampire. Most recently: Prêt a Porter, All Men Are Mortal, and Citizen X.

Serebryakov, a retired Professor Denys Hawthorne

Denys Hawthorne, Uncle Vanya, 1995First professional theatre experience was with the Ulster Group Theatre, Belfast. In 1958, moved to London where he has lived ever since. Theatre includes: Julius Caesar (Royal Exchange, Manchester), Macbeth, Henry IV, Romeo and Juliet (Royal Shakespeare Company), Someone Who'll Watch Over Me (Abbey Theatre, Dublin). Television includes: Capital City, An Englishman Abroad, Strumpet City. Films include: House of Spirits, The Russia House, Blanca de Chine, In the Name of the Father. He writes for radio and holds the Society of Authors' Prize for his dramatization of Jennifer Johnston's novel, How Many Miles to Babylon.

Elena, his wife Kim Thomson

Kim Thomson, Uncle Vanya, 1995Trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama. Theatre includes: Wedding Song (Watford Palace Theatre), Are You Lonesome Tonight? (Phoenix Theatre), Thunder in the Air (Gate Theatre, London), King Lear (Old Vic), Brand (Leatherhead and West End). Television includes: Easy Money, Lovejoy, Brush Strokes, Virtual Murder, Life and Loves of a She-Devil, Murder 101, Inspector Morse: The Sins of the Father, Great Expectations, Hands of the Murderer, Sherlock Holmes, The Wanderer. Films include: Stealing Heaven, The Tall Guy.

Sonya,the Professor's daughter by his first marriage Zara Turner

Zara Turner, Uncle Vanya, 1995Trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama. Theatre includes: The Hamster Wheel (Charabanc Theatre Company, on tour and at Riverside Studios, London), The Cure at Troy (Field Day Theatre Company, on tour and at Tricycle Theatre, London), Purgatory in Ingolstadt, Women of Troy (Gate Theatre, Notting Hill), Hippolytos (Almeida), The Revenger's Tragedy (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Six Degrees of Separation (Royal Court and Comedy Theatre), The Last Ones (Abbey Theatre, Dublin), Translations (Donmar Warehouse, London), The Importance of Being Earnest (Manchester Royal Exchange). Television includes: The Bill, Medics, Hearts & Minds, Father Ted, Crilly.

Telygin, an impoverished landowner P G Stephens

P G Stephens, Uncle Vanya, 1995Theatre: Early work includes Titus Andronicus with Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh, directed by Peter Brook. Work with the Royal Shakespeare Company includes The Taming of the Shrew (starring Vanessa Redgrave), and The Devils; with the Royal National Theatre: The Playboy of the Western World, Hamlet (with Albert Finney in the title part). Favourite stage role: Keegan in Shaw's John Bull's Other Island. Recent theatre: Shaw's You Never Can Tell (West Yorkshire Playhouse). Television includes: Only Fools and Horses, Oy Vay Maria, Give Us a Break, The Bill. Films include: Oh! What a Lovely War, Trench Coat, Scream and Scream Again.

Marya, mother to Vanya and to the Professor's dead first wife Pauline Delany

Pauline Delany, Uncle Vanya, 1995Born and trained in Dublin. Founder member of the Dublin Globe Theatre Company. Worked with the Gate Theatre in Dublin. Theatre includes: The Hostage (Royal Shakespeare Company and Royal Court), A Day in the Death of Joe Egg (King's Head), Man, Beast and Virtue, Juno and the Paycock (Royal National Theatre and Gate Theatre, Dublin), The Saxon Shore (Almeida Theatre), The Last Hero (Peacock Theatre, Dublin), A Lovely Day Tomorrow (Birmingham Rep Studio), Richard III (Ludlow Festival), The Beaux' Stratagem (Glasgow Citizens' Theatre), The Poker Session (West End), Cross Purpose (Hampstead Theatre), and the O'Casey Season at the Mermaid Theatre. Recent theatre includes Philadelphia, Here I Come (West End and King's Head, London). Television includes: The Dead, Playboy of the Western World, Grace, Shadow of a Gunman, Stephen D, The Seagull. Serials include: Public Eye, Mixed Blessings, Bluebirds, Casualty, Rumpole of the Bailey, The Expert. Films include: Nothing But The Best, Trench Coat, Percy, Brannigan, Innocent Sinners, The Love Ban, Rooney.

Labourer Gerard Lee

Gerard Lee, Uncle Vanya, 1995Trained at the Samuel Beckett Centre in Trinity College, Dublin, with the late Michael Joyce. Theatre includes: The Poor Mouth (Edinburgh Festival -Guardian Critics' Award 1991), Alexanderplatz (Edinburgh Festival 1994). In Dublin, has appeared in 16-19 in Kilmainham Gaol. He has also worked with Peter Sheridan's company, Second Level and in Co-Motion's Cabaret/Kabarett with Agnes Bernelle. Television includes: Father Ted, Crilly Show.

With Laura Fry
Phil Henry
Director Peter Gill

Peter Gill, Uncle Vanya, 1995Theatre: Started his career as an actor, then became Assistant Director at the Royal Court, and then Associate Director. Founder Director of the Riverside Studios. Has been an Associate Director of the Royal National Theatre since 1980 and was Founding Director of the National's Studio. Plays: The Sleepers' Den, Over Gardens Out, Small Change, Kick for Touch, In the Blue, Mean Tears, Boys Talk, Certain Young Men. Adaptations: A Provincial Life, The Merry-Go-Round, The Cherry Orchard, Touch and Go, As I Lay Dying. Directing includes, for the Royal Court: A Collier's Friday Night, The Local Stigmatic, The Ruffian on the Stair, A Provincial Life, A Soldiers' Fortune, The Daughter-in-Law, The Widowing of Mrs Holroyd, Life Price, Over Gardens Out, The Sleepers' Den, The Duchess of Malfi, Crete and Sergeant Pepper, The Merry-Go-Round, The Fool, Small Change. For Riverside Studios: The Cherry Orchard, The Changeling, Measure for Measure, Julius Caesar, Scrape off the Black. For the Royal National Theatre: A Month in the Country, Don Juan, Much Ado About Nothing, Danton's Death, Major Barbara, Tales from Hollywood, Small Change, Kick for Touch, Antigone, Venice Preserv'd, Fool for Love, The Murderers, As I Lay Dying, A Twist of Lemon, In the Blue, Bouncing, Up For None, The Garden of England, Show Songs, Mean Tears, Mrs Klein, Juno and the Paycock. For the Royal Shakespeare Company: Twelfth Night, New England. Other credits include Bow Down, Down by the Greenwood Side (Queen Elizabeth Hall), The Marriage of Figaro (Opera North), The Way of the World (Lyric, Hammersmith).

Associate Director Paul Miller

Paul Miller, Uncle Vanya, 1995Born in Chichester and educated at the University of Ulster at Coleraine. Assistant Director at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh 1987/88. Directing includes By The Border, Shamrocks and Crocodiles, What Country (co-directed), and Bad Company (Royal National Theatre Studio), The Alarmist, The Robbers, Bad Company (Bush Theatre). Work with Peter Gill includes The Way of the World, New England.

Settings Hayden Griffin

Has designed many world premiere productions by such playwrights as David Hare, Edward Bond, Howard Brenton, Trevor Griffiths, and David Mamet. Has designed exclusively for theatre, opera and ballet in Britain, Europe, the USA and Australia. Trained at Sadler's Wells Design Course under Margaret (Percy) Harris - Motley - and then co-ran the Motley Design Course with Percy for the next twenty-five years. He has been production designer for films and TV films including: Wetherby, Hope in the Year 2, Six Characters in Search of an Author, and recently the Channel 4 short, Syrup.

Costumes Pamela Howard

Pamela Howard, Uncle Vanya, 1995Trained at the Birmingham College of Art and the Slade School of Fine Art, London, and has worked with most of the leading theatre companies in Britain, including Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Nottingham Playhouse, Chichester Festival Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company, and the Royal National Theatre. She has designed plays and lectured extensively in the United States, and has been associated for many years with the work of the Theatre National Populaire in Villeurbane, France. Her designs for the Tramway Theatre, Glasgow, were part of the British exhibition at the Prague Quadriennale International Exhibition of Scenography in 1991, which won the Golden Triga, the award for best national exhibition. Her recent work includes The Revenger's Tragedy, Three Girls in Blue, Wicked Old Man and Happy Days with Prunella Scales (West Yorkshire Playhouse), The Madras House (Lyric Hammersmith and Edinburgh Festival 1992 - Edinburgh Critics Award), The Plough and the Stars (O'Casey Theatre Company 1994, tour of USA and Ireland) and currently, Behind the Green Curtains. For the Royal Shakespeare Company: Othello, The Taming of the Shrew, Elgar's Rondo. She is former Hon. Secretary of the Society of British Theatre Designers and currently International Co-ordinator for Great Britain for Prague Quadriennale 1995.

Music Terry Davies

Terry Davies, Uncle Vanya, 1995Born in Sussex, he studied music at Surrey University, specialising in sound recording. Spent a year as sound engineer at Chappell's recording studios. Began freelance arranging, working with a wide range of artists and styles. Also composed for music libraries, jingle packages, and a score for the National Film and Television School. Arranging and music directing for theatre includes work for the Swedish National Theatre, Iceland National Theatre, Scottish Ballet, Vienna Festival (Don Giovanni and The Marriage of Figaro), Stuttgart, Royal Court Theatre, Old Vic/Wyndham's Lysistrata). For the Royal National Theatre: Guys and Dolls, Rough Crossing, King Lear, The Shaughraun, White Chameleon, and the David Hare Trilogy - Racing Demon, Murmuring Judges and The Absence of War. His work as a composer includes: Antigone, Hamlet, The Misanthrope and Schism in England (Royal National Theatre), Whale (Crucible), The Way of the World (Lyric Hammersmith), Coriolanus, New England (Royal Shakespeare Company).

Lighting Designer Andy Phillips

Andy Phillips, Uncle Vanya, 1995Resident Lighting Designer at the Royal Court (1965-72), where he designed over eighty consecutive productions including Peter Gill's season of D H Lawrence plays. Since then, a freelance career has taken him all over the world. In 1974 he was nominated for a Tony for the Broadway production of Equus, and in 1989 for M Butterfly. Most recent designs include The Mountain Giants (Royal National Theatre), A Month in the Country (Albery), Armstrong's Last Goodnight (Edinburgh Festival, Royal Lyceum Theatre), Chasing the Moment (Southwark Playhouse), Handel and Brahms Variations (Birmingham Royal Ballet), New England (Royal Shakespeare Company).

Production Manager Lizzi Cocker
Stage Manager Dougie Wilson
Deputy Stage Manager Andrew Ogilvie
Assistant Stage Manager Emma Battcock
Production Electrician Conleth White
Publicity Director Orla Kennedy
Casting Ros Hubbard
John Hubbard
Mary Maguire
Production photographed by John Haynes
Poster and programme graphics by Michael Mayhew
Programme compiled by Lyn Haill
Version by Frank McGuiness

Frank McGuiness, Uncle Vanya, 1995Born in Buncrana, County Donegal, Frank McGuinness lives in Dublin and lectures in English at St Patrick's College, Maynooth. He has also worked at the University of Ulster, Coleraine, and at University College, Dublin. Stage plays: The Factory Girls (1982 Abbey Theatre, Dublin), Baglady (1985 Abbey Theatre, Dublin) Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme (1985 Abbey Theatre, Dublin, and tour; 1986 Hampstead Theatre, London. Winner of Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, Harvey's Best Play Award, Cheltenham Literary Prize, Ewart Biggs Peace Prize, London Evening Standard and Plays and Players Awards for Most Promising Playwright, and London Fringe Awards for Best Playwright and Best Play) Innocence (1986 Gate Theatre, Dublin) Carthaginians (1988 Peacock Theatre, Dublin; 1989 Hampstead Theatre, London; 1990 Williamstown Theatre Festival, USA; 1992 revised version directed by the author for Druid Theatre Company, Galway) Mary and Lizzie (1989 Royal Shakespeare Company) The Bread Man (1990 Gate Theatre, Dublin) Someone Who'll Watch Over Me (1992) Hampstead Theatre, London, transferring to the Vaudeville Theatre, London, then to the Booth Theatre on Broadway; nominated for Tony and Laurence Olivier Awards; winner of New York Critics' Circle Award for Best Foreign Play and Writers' Guild Best Play Award), The Bird Sanctuary (1994 Abbey Theatre, Dublin). He has also written versions of: Lorca's Yerma (1987 Abbey Theatre, Dublin), Ibsen's Rosmersholm (1987 Royal National Theatre), Chekhov's Three Sisters (1990 Gate Theatre, Dublin; Royal Court Theatre, London), Brecht's The Threepenny Opera (1991 Gate Theatre, Dublin), Ibsen's Peer Gynt (1994 Oslo, then tour including Barbican Theatre, Manchester Palace Theatre, and Tokyo), Ibsen's Hedda Gabler (1994 New York) Films for television: Scout (1987 BBC), Henhouse (1989 BBC; winner of the Prix de l'Intervision and Prix de l'Art Critique at 1990 Prague International Television Festival). He is currently working on his first feature film.

Administrator Colette Nelis

Born in Derry. Trained and practised as a nurse in London before returning to Derry where she worked with a number of firms in both administration and secretarial work. Joined Field Day in 1986 as Administrative Secretary, and is now the Company Administrator.

Production credits

Colin Findlay, GKN Kwikform Scaffolding, Marie Blake, Chris Masland, The London Graphic Centre, Mary Walker & The London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham, Irina Brown, Woodpeck Nursery, Cosprop Ltd, Sealed Air Ltd, Carpenders Park Nursery, Scala Impex, Gutters & Ladders, Joyce Beagearie, Jane Slattery, Sue Dunlop, David Lawes, Sophie Palmer, The Russian Trade Centre, Polly McDonald, The Russian Bookshop, Tendercare Nurseries Ltd, David Shuttle, Beat About The Bush, Peter Whiteman, Mark Carpenter

Field Day Credits

M C Kerr Transport, Derry City Council and the Guildhall Staff, Management and Staff of the Foyle Arts Centre, Kevin McCaul & Ciaron Nelis, Centre for Creative Communication, Tourist Information Centre, Derry, Des McLaughlin Travel, Morna Regaz

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