The fourth ‘Meet the cast’ video introduces you to Sid Sagar, who plays Dar in The Invisible Hand. Though Dar may not be always good with words, Sid is a delight to watch as he talks about the plays that inspired him to be an actor, telling unintentional white lies and misplacing Mars bars on stage!
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We continue our ‘Meet The Cast’ video blogs with Parth Thakerar (Bashir in The Invisible Hand) who reveals his pre-performance rituals, why the best job he’s ever had was with his dad, and how The Invisible Hand has impacted his life.
If you tell us his interview doesn’t put a smile on your face we just won’t believe it!
Tony Jayawardena (Bend It Like Beckham, West End) plays Imam Saleem in The Invisible Hand. Find out how he prepared for the role and the most compelling aspects of the script and the production.
How would you sum up your character in 5 words?
Enraged, charismatic, damaged, fatherly, dangerous.
What processes or techniques have you been using to prepare yourself for the role?
The main points in any process for me is to be clear on the story we are telling and then be very clear on what my character wants.
Global finance, international terrorism, politics, religion…. Which aspects of Ayad Akhtar’s script have you found most compelling?
I find the finance aspect fascinating mainly because I know so little about it. Learning about that and then seeing how Ayad has used it in the context of the play has been enthralling.
What element of the show do you think audiences will enjoy the most?
I hope audiences will enjoy be drawn into a world full of tension where the consequences really are life and death.
The cast of The Invisible Hand – Tony Jayawardena, Daniel Lapaine, Sid Sagar and Parth Thakerar – discuss which of the themes of the play are the most important for them.
Don’t worry – there are no spoilers in the video!
Adrian Lester, Tricycle Theatre Ambassador, is joined by actors including Kenneth Branagh, Jim Carter, Gina McKee, Imelda Staunton and Meera Syal in support of the Tricycle Theatre’s Capital Project, which will see the theatre undergo a period of redevelopment over the coming year.
Adrian Lester: “Under the leadership of Indhu Rubasingham, the Tricycle has blossomed as a venue in and for the community whilst proving itself as an incredible production powerhouse which rivals any UK theatre. I am delighted to be supporting this campaign that will lead to the transformation of the auditorium, with increased capacity, improved sightlines, greater accessibility and a better experience for both audiences and actors alike.”
The public launch of the theatre’s Name a Seat fundraising campaign will see 280 seats go on sale today at £1,000 each. This coincides with a wider project launch which will see the Tricycle host a public open day on Thursday 2 June where audiences and members of the public can take a tour of the building with Chapman Waterworth, the capital project architects, to see what the plans involve.
Gina McKee: “The Tricycle is a unique and special place. The crucial upgrade to the building means the invaluable work created at the Tricycle will have a brighter future. Please support the capital project.
Kenneth Branagh: “It is wonderful that this renovation will allow the Tricycle’s auditorium to be transformed into a state of the art, world-class theatre that truly reflects the quality of the work being produced on its stage.”
The plans will provide a venue that matches the Tricycle’s artistic achievements, allowing it to produce work that is more ambitious in quality, range and scope. By re-designing the theatre’s auditorium, backstage and front of house spaces, the Tricycle will also fulfil its desire to become an accessible venue open to all. Each year the Tricycle delivers more than 21,000 learning experiences for young people and the transformation will also offer an enhanced venue for this audience.
Key highlights of the capital development project include a fully upgraded larger theatre with a new stage and seating – with 50 additional seats; a new air cooling system; easier and greater access for wheelchair users throughout the building both front of house and backstage; and a new café space at the heart of improved customer facilities across the front of house areas.
Meera Syal: “Theatre is about seeing things differently, about hearing stories that help us to understand who we are. The Tricycle plays a crucial role in supporting playwrights from all walks of life, providing a platform for their voices to be heard.”
Imelda Staunton: “By transforming the theatre, the Tricycle can realise its vision to become a venue that is truly accessible for all, where everyone can feel welcome and enjoy a great night out.”
In addition to being able to Name a Seat in the new auditorium for £1,000, other ways to donate include Make Your Mark whereby donors’ names will be artistically displayed as part of a bespoke design within the front of house area for £5,000; or Give a Gift, where the public can donate anything from £1 to £999. For further information or to make a donation please see www.tricycle.co.uk/tricycletransformed.
Jim Carter: “In refurbishing the theatre and front of house spaces with this ambitious and exciting project, the Tricycle is reaffirming its place at the heart of Kilburn for the local community.”
To date, the Tricycle has raised £5.5 million and requires a further £750,000 to complete the project. Arts Council England has contributed £3.1 million to the project in addition to generous support from trusts and foundations including the Backstage Trust, The City of London Corporation’s charity, City Bridge Trust, Foyle Foundation, Garfield Weston Foundation, John Lyon’s Charity, Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust, Sir Siegmund Warburg Voluntary Settlement and the Wolfson Foundation.
The Invisible Hand will be the final production before the theatre is closed in July 2016 until the summer of 2017; the Tricycle’s cinema will remain open.
Daniel Lapaine plays American banker Nick Bright in the UK Premiere of The Invisible Hand by Pulitzer Prize winner Ayad Akhtar.
Daniel’s acting credits include The Merchant of Venice at the Globe Theatre, Hedda Gabler at The Old Vic, Zero Dark Thirty and Muriel’s Wedding.
Watch the video to find out about malfunctioning stage, horse-riding in westerns and how a film on his life would look like…
Daniel Lapaine (The Merchant of Venice, Shakespeare’s Globe; Muriel’s Wedding) is playing American banker Nick Bright in our UK Premiere of The Invisible Hand. We asked him about his favourite moment in the play, the challenges of the role and what audiences should expect from the show…
For global financier Nick Bright (the character you play in The Invisible Hand), the rise and fall of currencies, commodities, stocks and shares is the everyday norm. Was it a world you knew much about before you began rehearsals?
I knew nothing about the world of finance before The Invisible Hand. Nothing! I found it boring and a little bit scary at the same time, but since starting rehearsals and delving into the world of banking, I’ve done a complete U-turn. I had no idea how fascinating it actually is and how reflective it is of the world we live in. The market is like a living organism, moving and morphing continuously as the world changes, while at the same time being mysteriously guided by what the American economist Adam Smith called “the invisible hand”, which is where we get the name of the play!
What is your favourite moment and/or line in the play?
One of my favourite moments in the play is when me and my captor Bashir (Parth Thakerar) hear a distant US drone attack on Islamist extremists. Although the play is set inside a cell, suddenly the violence and reality of the outside world becomes vividly real for a terrifying moment.
Your role is particularly demanding in that you’re on stage for most of the play – how do you maintain your energy levels?
I don’t honestly know yet. It’s one of the toughest things I’ve ever done. When I first read the play, I thought it was an exploration of big ideas and political and economic concepts and that performing it would be about maintaining the mental stamina of the argument. I wasn’t expecting how incredibly physical the role was and how violent and exhausting the world the characters inhabit is. Now that we are up and running the play, the stage has turned into a boxing ring, where big ideas and complex relationships are slugged out with real sweat and blood and tears.
In a sentence, what can audiences expect if they come to see this show?
The Invisible Hand is a white-knuckle hostage thriller, which is normally a genre for cinema and one you don’t often see on stage these days. It’s raw, gritty, contemporary and very frightening. We want the audience to be on the edge of their seats from the beginning to the end!
We asked the cast of The Invisible Hand what the show’s about, what they have in common with their characters. Watch the video to hear their answers…
Tony Jayawardena play’s Imam Saleem in our UK Premiere production of The Invisible Hand. We spoke to Tony about life as an actor, his favourite plays, nightmares coming true and telling lies at auditions…
Tricycle Theatre presents the UK première of
The Invisible Hand
By Ayad Akhtar
12 May – 2 July
Director: Indhu Rubasingham | Designer: Lizzie Clachan
Lighting Designer: Oliver Fenwick | Sound Designer: Alexander Caplen
Cast: Tony Jayawardena, Sid Sagar and Parth Thakerar, Daniel Lapaine
Artistic Director of the Tricycle Theatre, Indhu Rubasingham, today announces the full cast for the UK première of The Invisible Hand – a political thriller from Ayad Akhtar, who won the Pulitzer Prize for his play Disgraced which ran at the Bush Theatre in 2013.
Rubasingham directs Tony Jayawardena, Daniel Lapaine, Sid Sagar and Parth Thakerar in the UK première production which opens on 18 May, with previews from 12 May, and runs until 2 July. The Invisible Hand is the final production before the theatre closes until summer 2017 as it undergoes a £5.5 million capital re-development.
American banker Nick Bright knows that his freedom comes at a price. Confined to a cell within the depths of rural Pakistan, every second counts. Who will decide his fate? His captors, or the whims of the market?
Ayad Akhtar’s intense political thriller lays bare the raw, unfettered power of global finance in this fast-moving, contemporary play directed by the Tricycle’s Artistic Director Indhu Rubasingham.
Ayad Akhtar was born in New York City and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He is the author of American Dervish, published in 25 languages worldwide and a 2012 Best Book of the Year at Kirkus Reviews, Toronto’s Globe and Mail, Shelf-Awareness, and O (Oprah) Magazine. As a screenwriter, he was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay for The War Within. He has received commissions from Lincoln Center and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. He is a graduate of Brown and Columbia Universities with degrees in Theater and Film Directing. The Invisible Hand premièred at the Repertory Theater of St Louis. Other theatre credits include Disgraced (American Theater Company in Chicago; Lincoln Center, New York and Bush Theatre – Pulitzer Prize for Drama) and The Who & The What (La Jolla Playhouse).
Tony Jayawardena plays Imam Saleem. His theatre credits include Bend It Like Beckham (Phoenix Theatre), The Roaring Girl, The Arden of Faversham, The White Devil, The Empress, Twelfth Night (RSC), Dick Whittington, Love and Stuff (Theatre Royal Stratford East), The Wind In The Willows (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Wah! Wah! Girls (Sadler’s Wells/ Kneehigh), Great Expectations (English Touring Theatre), The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (Royal and Derngate, Northampton), London Assurance, All’s Well That Ends Well, England People Very Nice (National Theatre). For television his recent work includes The Windsors, Strike Back, The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby; and for film, his work includes Towerblock, Trance and A Cat Named Bob.
Daniel Lapaine plays Nick. His theatre credits include The Merchant of Venice (Shakespeare’s Globe), Other Desert Cities, Hedda Gabler (The Old Vic), The Winter’s Tale (Sheffield Crucible), The Dance of Death (Donmar Trafalgar), All My Sons (Apollo Theatre), Scenes from the Back of Beyond, F***ing Games (Royal Court), Les Parents Terribles, King Lear (Sydney Theatre Company), Island (Belvoir Street Theatre), Romeo and Juliet, Richard III, Hamlet (Bell Shakespeare Company). For television his work includes Versailles, Catastrophe, Critical, Vexed, Lewis, Vera, Black Mirror, Identity, Moonshot, Hotel Babylon, Sex, the City and Me, Jane Hall, Good Housekeeping Guide, Golden Hour, Jericho, Death on the Nile, Redcap, Helen of Troy, I Saw You and Tenth Kingdom. Film credits include Dead in Tombstone, Zero Dark Thirty, Gozo, Jack the Giant Killer, Shanghai, Last Chance Harvey, Collusion, Abduction Club, Ritual, Journeyman, Double Jeopardy, Elephant Juice, Brokedown Palace, 54, Say You’ll Be Mine, 1999, Dangerous Beauty, Polish Wedding and Muriel’s Wedding.
Sid Sagar plays Dar. His theatre credits include The Tempest, Cymbeline, The Oresteia, The Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare’s Globe), Treasure (Finborough Theatre), The History Boys (UK tour), True Brits (HighTide/Edinburgh/Bush Theatre) and Eternal Love (Shakespeare’s Globe & English Touring Theatre). His television work includes The Hollow Crown and The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies; and for film, Karma Magnet.
Parth Thakerar plays Bashir. His theatre credits include King Charles III (UK tour), The Hard Problem (National Theatre), Arcadia (Nottingham Playhouse), King Lear (Chichester Festival Theatre).
Artistic Director of the Tricycle Theatre Indhu Rubasingham directs. Her work for the company includes Red Velvet (which transferred to New York and later to the Garrick Theatre as part of the Kenneth Branagh Season) and Handbagged (winner of the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre – also West End and UK tour). Other productions for the Tricycle Theatre include A Wolf in Snakeskin Shoes, Multitudes, The House That Will Not Stand, Paper Dolls, Women, Power and Politics, Stones in His Pockets, Detaining Justice, The Great Game: Afghanistan, Fabulation and Starstruck. Other theatre credits include The Motherf**cker with the Hat (Evening Standard Award for Best Play), The Waiting Room (National Theatre), The Ramayana (National Theatre/ Birmingham Rep), Belong, Disconnect, Free Outgoing, Lift Off, Clubland, The Crutch and Sugar Mummies (Royal Court), Ruined (Almeida), Yellowman and Anna in the Tropics (Hampstead Theatre), Secret Rapture and The Misanthrope (Minerva, Chichester), Romeo and Juliet (Chichester Festival Theatre ), Pure Gold (Soho Theatre), The No Boys Cricket Club and Party Girls (Stratford East), Wuthering Heights (Birmingham REP), Heartbreak House (Watford Palace Theatre), Sugar Dollies, Shakuntala (Gate Theatre), A River Sutra (Three Mill Island Studios), Rhinoceros (UC Davis, California) and A Doll’s House (Young Vic).