Anne-Marie Duff to make musical theatre debut under Mary Queen Of Scots director

Anne-Marie Duff arriving for The Olivier Awards at the Royal Albert Hall in London.
Anne-Marie Duff arriving for The Olivier Awards at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

Anne-Marie Duff will star in her first musical when she appears in a production of Sweet Charity directed by the woman behind the hit film Mary Queen Of Scots.

British actress Duff made her name in television series like Shameless and films including Suffragette, but had so far eschewed musical theatre.

The 48-year-old will star opposite Arthur Darvill, who played Rory Williams in Doctor Who, and the production will be directed by Josie Rourke.

It will see Duff reunited with Rourke after their acclaimed production of Berenice at the Donmar Warehouse in 2012. It will be Rourke’s last as artistic director of the theatre.

Women in Film & TV Awards 2016
Anne-Marie Duff will make her musical debut at the Donmar Warehouse (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Sweet Charity follows a dance hall hostess who is unlucky in love until she meets Oscar, a mild-mannered tax accountant.

Rourke said: “Part of my mission as the Donmar’s artistic director has been to create cheap and free access for audiences, particularly young people.

“Through the generosity of Susie Sainsbury and The Backstage Trust, I’m able to finish my time at the Donmar on the happiest of notes, with something I really care about – great theatre for all young people.

“I’m so happy to be joined in my final production as Donmar artistic director by the luminous Anne-Marie Duff, making her musical theatre debut, and the great Wayne McGregor.

“They are two of the finest people, and collaborators I’ve worked with, and this reunion with them, and the music of Cy Coleman is a joyous way to end a dozen years as an artistic director from the Bush to the Donmar.”

Josie Rourke
Josie Rourke directed the film Mary Queen Of Scots (Isabel Infantes/PA)

Susie Sainsbury, of The Backstage Trust, said: “From the moment Josie Rourke and Kate Pakenham started they were determined to open the doors of the wonderful Donmar space to as wide an audience as possible.

“Through their vision of greater access to great art, what the Donmar has done to spur the rest of the industry to action is a remarkable achievement.

“I am delighted that we can support Sweet Fridays for Josie’s final production, both in celebration of, but also in recognition of the importance of affordable access to the arts, particularly for young people.”

As part of the Donmar Warehouse’s Sweet Fridays offer, free tickets will be available for under-25s between April 19 and May 21 by ballot.

Tickets will be available online from 9am on Thursday February 21, with phone bookings beginning at 10pm.

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