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Annie Whittle And Roy Billing To Star In Uproarious Intergenerational Comedy

Two of New Zealand’s most beloved and experienced actors will take centre stage in February 2022, in the New Zealand premiere of Tony-nominated play Grand Horizons by Bess Wohl. Annie Whittle (Four Flat Whites in Italy, The World’s Fastest Indian, Shortland Street) and Roy Billing OAM (Underbelly, A Tale of Two Cities, The Panthers, Art) star as Nancy and Bill, 50 years into their seemingly picture-perfect marriage.

Proudly presented by MiNDFOOD and fresh from its 2019 Broadway world premiere, this crisply observed and heartfelt comedy will be directed by 2020 New Zealander of the Year Jennifer Ward-Lealand Te Atamira CNZM.

Jennifer Ward-Lealand says, “I’m delighted to be directing Grand Horizons for Auckland Theatre Company. Bess Wohl has written such a smart play with searingly funny and honest dialogue, beautifully drawn characters and a family dynamic that is turned on its head right from the get-go.

In the play we see that Nancy and Bill’s fifty-year marriage is not just an investment for the couple themselves, but for all those in their orbit. Adult children are forced to see their Mum and Dad not just as ‘parents’ but as fully rounded human beings with their individual needs and wants - and the family equilibrium is shattered in the most entertaining and bittersweet way.”

Joining Whittle and Billing in the outstanding cast is well-known actor Todd Emerson (Westside, Hudson & Halls Live!, Daffodils) and internationally established actors Beatriz Romilly (Macbeth, War of the Worlds, Doctors) and Esaú Mora (Read To Me, Cymbeline, Wondrous Strange) making their Auckland Theatre Company debuts.

Director Jennifer Ward-Lealand is joined in the creative team by renowned set designer Tracy Grant Lord (The Firebird, The Audience, Billy Elliot: The Musical) bringing her impeccable style to the production. Award-winning lighting and sound designer Sean Lynch (Black Lover, Winding Up, The Audience) also brings his vast experience and flair to the team.

Kicking off 2022 in sparkling style, Tāmaki Makaurau audiences will be treated to an international hit comedy about taking a chance on life in search of true happiness, headlined by two New Zealand acting legends.

Tickets for Auckland Theatre Company’s unmissable season of Grand Horizons, opening 8 February, are now on sale.

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