Lenny Henry in Fences at the Duchess Theatre
The Comic Turned Shakespearean Actor Will Appear in the August Wilson Play for its West End Transfer
Lenny Henry is set to return to the West End this year as it is announced that the production of Fences, which appeared at the Theatre Royal Bath until earlier in the month, will be transferring to the Duchess Theatre.
The production will see him continue in his role as resentful Troy Maxson in August Wilson’s popular play from June, with additional cast members in the forms of Peter Bankole, Colin McFarlane, Tanya Moodi and Ashley Zhangazha.
Henry has been in the theatre news regularly in recent years as he decided to add to his long list of comedy credits with work for Shakespearean theatre. This led him to appear in Othello at the West Yorkshire Playhouse in 2009, which also transferred to the West End when it appeared at Trafalgar Studios 1, and then The Comedy Of Errors at the Olivier National Theatre in 2011. Henry is best known for appearances in a wealth of well known British comedy series, in addition regular appearances for Comic Relief and also presenting entertainment shows like Magicians. He recently lent his voice to Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists.
August Wilson’s Fences focuses on the character of Troy Maxson in 1950s Pittsburgh, where he is struggling to make ends meet after his dreams were taken from him. He was once a promising athlete and as the promise was not met he holds a lot of resentment, taking it out on his son and wife. Looking at race relations in the period between the Korean War and Vietnam, Fences has stood out since it was penned in the early 1980s and remains an admired piece.
Wilson unveiled the show in the late 1980s with Broadway 46th Street Theatre premiering it in 1987. The show would win numerous awards, including the Tony Award for Best New Play and Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play for its 2010 appearance at the Cort Theatre, also on Broadway.
Following Alan Bennett’s Untold Stories, Paulette Randall directs Lenny Henry in Fences at the Duchess Theatre from Wednesday 26th June 2013 (previews from Wednesday 19th June 2013) to Saturday 14th September 2013.