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Jennifer Ludlam Stars in Fiery New British Comedy

Ay Yai Yai!
Jennifer Ludlam Stars in Fiery New British Comedy in August

Hysterically funny and historically fascinating, Filthy Business is an opportunity to experience the work of one of Britain's most in-demand contemporary playwrights, Ryan Craig. Auckland Theatre Company’s season of this hilarious family drama opens at the ASB Waterfront Theatre on 14 August and showcases what could be theatre’s female character-of-the-year, performed by the brilliant Jennifer Ludlam.

Craig grew up in the fourth generation of London rubber retailers, which was the inspiration for his punchy new comedy, currently receiving five-star reviews across the UK.

Award-winning actress Jennifer Ludlam MNZM (Shortland Street, Boys will Be Boys, Calendar Girls), lauded for her prowess in Auckland and Wellington seasons of August: Osage County, will play the side-splitting Jewish matriarch Yetta Solomon.

Craig’s modern-day Mother Courage dishes out charm and abuse in equal measure, in an attempt to ensure her rubber empire will continue for future generations. Determined to protect the legacy of her shop, it’s anyone’s guess how far she will go to keep the business in the family and the family in the business.

Well known as a master of contemporary comedies, Auckland Theatre Company Artistic Director Colin McColl will direct the ASB season of Filthy Business. He is relishing the opportunity to work with Ludlam, whom he hand-picked for the iconic role.

“Jennifer is an actor at the top of her game and Yetta Solomon is the perfect role for her. Feisty, opinionated, poignant and downright funny. She’ll eat it up - and she is supported by a wonderful team of comic actors - experienced and rookie, as her sons, grandchildren and in-laws. I can’t wait to get working with them on this hilarious new work," McColl says.

The experienced cast also includes Andrew Grainger (The Cherry Orchard, Nell Gwynn, Billy Elliot the Musical) Jodie Dorday (The Bookclub, Billy Elliot the Musical, Burying Brian), Holly Hudson (FLAPS, To Kill a Mockingbird, DNA), Adam Gardiner (Peer Gynt (Recycled), Polo, Rupert), Hera Dunleavy (The Cherry Orchard, To Kill a Mockingbird, Other Desert Cities) and Joe Witkowski (Under the Mountain, Into The Woods). Making their Auckland Theatre Company débuts are Simon Leary (Cinderella in Space, A Servant to Two Masters, Dirty Laundry), Logan Cole (The Christmas Detention Centre, Bats, Tom-Toms Musical Adventure) and Simbarashe Matshe (Mortal Engines, Ash vs Evil Dead), with Ava Diahkby (ALICE, BOYS, Funny Girls) and Augustine Daubé in their first main stage appearances with the company.

McColl once again leads a visionary creative team, including Set Designer Dan Williams (When Sun & Moon Collide, Boys, YOU FIRST), Costume Designer Nic Smillie (Peer Gynt [recycled]) and Lighting Designer Jo Kilgour (Under the Mountain, Amadeus, Nell Gwynn).

Set in East End London spanning the years 1968 to 1982, the impressive set and costumes will evolve with the story.

Filthy Business is one of the hottest new works to come out of Britain in recent years. It’s a chance to celebrate family drama, cultural diversity and the entrepreneurial outsiders who have become the beating heart of every modern society. And to laugh your farshtunken socks off!

© Scoop Media

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