FEATURED: ‘Valued Friends’, Rose Theatre, Kingston

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‘Valued Friends’, Rose Theatre, Kingston

You used to get some really good conversation in this flat. Burning issues and moral dilemmas and things. Now all everyone talks about is money.

It’s 1980s London and change is happening. The city is ablaze with social, political and cultural upheaval and in a basement flat in Earls Court, four friends in their mid-thirties are scrabbling to keep their heads above water.

Housemates for more than 10 years, Sherry is a hapless, quirky comedian; Paul, a keen music journalist; Marion, a straight-talking realist; and Howard, an earnest academic writing about the corruption of capitalism. The friends are thrown unexpectedly into a battle of nerves when a young, confident property developer offers them a substantial fee to vacate their home in West London.

Spurred on by the revolutions of their time, they quickly realise they hold all the cards in this real-life game of Monopoly and over the course of three years, they manipulate a burgeoning property market one cup of tea at a time.

Stephen Jeffreys’ play was an instant classic when first performed at Hampstead Theatre in 1989 winning the Evening Standard and Critics’ Circle Award for Most Promising Playwright, with a cast that featured Jane Horrocks, Peter Capaldi, Tim McInnerny, Serena Gordon, Martin Clunes and Peter Caffrey.

Valued Friends is a compelling comedy drama set to the soundtrack of 1980s London and against the backdrop of Thatcher’s Britain. This brand new production directed by Michael Fentiman will be the first revival of the play in 30 years.

Two Pints of Lager and A Packet of Crisps star Natalie Casey returns to the stage, this time to take on the role of Sherry. Further casting is yet to be announced.

Valued Friends will run from 20 September to 12 October, with opening night on 26 September. 

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