Story added:  10:29am Mon Feb 13, 2017
An authentic touch to wartime family drama
Friday 17th February, 2017 - Nottingham Playhouse
An authentic touch to wartime family drama
Vicky McClure stars in Nottingham Playhouse's 40th anniversary production of Stephen Lowe's Touched.
BAFTA winner Vicky McClure takes a lead role in Nottingham Playhouse’s 40th anniversary production of Stephen Lowe’s Touched, which runs from Friday, February 17 to Saturday, March 4.

Nottingham-born McClure has starred in This Is England — for which she won the Bafta — Line of Duty and Broadchurch.

In her first major stage role, she plays Sandra in Touched.

The drama is set during the second world war, during the 100 days between VE and VJ Day, and centres on the lives of a family of working class Nottingham women.

The promise of a brave new world has arrived with peace in Europe and the election of the first Labour government — but the fighting is not yet over.

With her husband away at war and having lost her son in a car accident during the blackout, Sandra is torn apart by grief.

Meanwhile, her sisters — the brash Joan and naïve Betty — are brimming with hope for the future and the possibilities of new lives ahead for all of them.

Director Matt Aston said: “Vicky McClure was always my first choice to play the part of Sandra in Touched.Despite the play premiering in 1977 it is as if the play has been written for her.

“It was my intention to cast the show with the authentic Nottingham voice at its core. We’ve managed to achieve that and I couldn’t be more excited at the prospect of getting started.”

Giles Croft, the Playhouse’s artistic director said: “Presenting the 40th anniversary of the best-known play by Nottingham’s most important playwright is a wonderful way to start the year; but to present for the first time with authentic Nottingham voices is particularly exciting.

“Add to that the formidable talents of Vicky McLure and Aisling Loftus and this production will make an important statement about the cultural and creative life of the city.”

Aisling Loftus, who starred as Sonya Rostova in the television adaptation of War And Peace, will play Joan.

The role of Bridie is played by Sarah Beck Mather, who is best known for her work on ITV’s The Royal and Endeavour.

THE Playhouse has revealed artistic director Giles Crofts’ last play before he steps down.

He will direct Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, to be staged in November.

It is one of the highlights of the venue’s autumn line-up.

Giles said: “When thinking about what would be my final production I was unsure of where to begin.

“I knew that it had to be a play that I love, that it should be connected with the theme of change and would also present me with a new challenge. I have never directed Chekhov, I love The Cherry Orchard and is there a better play about change?”
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