Television actors line up for Mercury

A HOST of well-loved television actors are set to visit Colchester's Mercury Theatre in the spring to bring their own special magic to two classic plays.

A HOST of well-loved television actors are set to visit Colchester's Mercury Theatre in the spring to bring their own special magic to two classic plays.

Screwball comedy Arsenic and Old Lace will star Brigit Forsyth, best known for her roles in Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads? and, more recently, Playing the Field. She will be joined by former Dr Who Sylvester McCoy, Angela Thorne (To The Manor Born) and Huw Higginson (The Bill).

Joseph Kesselring's play is set in a quaint Victorian Brooklyn house. Two kindly sisters have been perfecting their unique elderberry wine; meanwhile, their nephew is convinced he is the President, the local policeman wants to be a playwright, and a Boris Karloff lookalike, a plastic surgeon and a glamorous woman arrive to complicate the mad-cap proceedings.

It runs from February 7 to 12.


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The following week Chris Ellison, better known as the tough DI Burnside in The Bill and Burnside joins Deborah Grant (Bergerac, Bob Martin) in The Gentle Hook by Francis Durbridge which promises thrills and chills in equal measure.

Also taking starring roles will be Gareth Hunt (The New Avengers, Night and Day), Tony Scannell (Ted Roach in The Bill) and George Sewell (The Detectives).

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Stacey Harrison, a charming and sophisticated businesswoman, has a knack for getting involved in complicated and mysterious goings-on. Seeking a divorce from her husband for somewhat unclear reasons, she is subsequently attacked by a stranger, whom she kills in the ensuing struggle.

However, it is when Stacey disappears that the murderous happenings spiral to a thrilling climax.

Mercury Theatre spokesman Matt Simpkins said: “We are very pleased to welcome these familiar faces to Colchester. This is a great opportunity for audiences to see these stars of the small screen perform live on stage.”

Booking for both shows is open now. Tickets priced from £8.50 are available from the Mercury box office on 01206 573948. The rest of the Mercury's spring season will be launched with the spring brochure in December.

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