Cocktail of Coward to delight with rare outing of nine one-act plays

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From the pen of Noël Coward comes Tonight at 8.30; a summer cocktail of Coward at Guildford’s Yvonne Arnaud Theatre from Wednesday to Saturday, May 28 to 31.

Set in the 1930s, Tonight at 8.30 is a collection of nine one-act plays which will be performed together, three plays per night, for the first time since Coward himself starred in them in 1936.

Peep through your fingers at the chaotic Red Peppers music-hall show, join Lady Giplin for a soiree of mistaken identities in Hands Across the Sea and break your heart along with Laura in the famous Still Life, the original version of the film Brief Encounter.

Award-winning playwright, composer, director, actor and singer, Noël Coward was known for his wit and flamboyance.

He achieved huge success as a playwright, publishing more than 50 plays from his teens onward, with his most famous plays including Hay Fever, Private Lives and Blithe Spirit.

Winner of the UK Theatre Award for Best Director last year, Blanche McIntyre directs.

She said: “Tonight at 8:30 is a lost masterpiece, a celebration of writing and acting that builds to become a manifesto on how to live.

“The breadth of Coward’s vision and the depth of his humanity are staggering and directing the Tonight at 8:30 sequence has been one of my lifetime ambitions.”

The ensemble cast includes Kirsty Besterman, Daniel Crossley, Amy Cudden, Shereen Martin, Olivia Poulet, Gyuri Sarossy, Peter Singh, Orlando Wells and Rupert Young.

From vaudeville to satire, broad farce to intricate comedy of manners and melodrama to romance, Tonight at 8.30 spans the glorious range of Coward’s writing.

Tickets on 01483 440000 or www.yvonne-arnaud.co.uk.