The Cherry Orchard
SIMON ARMSTRONG - Yermolai Lopakhin
Simon is an Associate Artist of Clwyd Theatre Cymru. He was born in Llanelli, worked as a teacher for four years and trained at the B.O.V.T.S.
For S.A.T.T.F: Julius Caesar; Antony and Cleopatra, Uncle Vanya, and The Misanthrope.
Other theatre includes: Hamlet (The Globe); SUS (Young Vic); To Kill a Mockingbird; The Crucible; Hobson's Choice; One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest; Macbeth; Troilus and Cressida; Of Mice and Men; Waiting for Godot ( all with Clwyd Theatre Cymru) ; The Merchant of Venice; A Winters Tale ( Wales Theatre Company); Oleanna; Educating Rita; The Accrington Pals; Under Milk Wood; A Christmas Carol ( all with Dukes Theatre); Troilus and Cressida (RSC).
Television includes: Game of Thrones (HBO); Doctors; Holby City; Casualty (BBC); Caerdydd; Treflan (S4C); Crash (BBC Wales); Midsomer Murders (ITV).
Film includes: Black Out; The Killer Elite; Made in Dagenham; The Edge of Love; Resistance; Pierre point.
CHRIS BIANCHI – Leonid Gaev
Over the last few months, Chris has toured in the Lullabies of Broadmoor quartet of plays (nominated for an Off West End award at the Finborough Theatre) and played The French Detective at the Egg Theatre in Bath.
Other theatre includes: Raising Kamila (Theatre West); The Nutcracker (Bath Theatre Royal); Ministry of Fear, A Flying Visit, The Crowstarver and Bonjour Bob (Theatre Alibi); Julius Caesar and Antony and Cleopatra (Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory); A Christmas Carol, Alice through the Looking Glass (Tobacco Factory Theatre); Blue/Orange (Plain Clothes); Aesop's Fables (Bristol Old Vic and international tour); King Lear, The Provok'd Wife, The Seagull and Filumena (Peter Hall Company); The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Charlotte's Web (Duke's Theatre, Lancaster); No Loud Bangs series, The Rivals, Penetrator, Addicted to Love (BOV); Instant Wit; Desperate Men.
PAUL BRENDAN – Semyon Yepikhodov
Trained: Bristol Old Vic Theatre School
For SATTF: King Lear, Richard II, Antony & Cleopatra, Julius Caesar,
Theatre includes: Four For Jericho (Menagerie Theatre Company); Brooklyn (The Arcola Theatre); Blowing (Fanshen/Company of Angels); The Merry Wives of Windsor (Changeling Theatre Company); A Model for Mankind (The Cock Tavern Theatre) Molière (The Finborough Theatre); Gizmo Love (The Brewery); Twelfth Night (The Lord Chamberlain’s Men); Complicit, The Norman Conquests (The Old Vic); Tartuffe (Circomedia); A Month in the Country (The Tobacco Factory); The Threepenny Opera (Bristol Old Vic).
PAUL CURRIER - Tramp
Trained: Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.
For SATTF: King Lear, The Comedy of Errors, Richard II, Uncle Vanya, Antony & Cleopatra, Julius Caesar, Much Ado About Nothing, Othello, Love’s Labour’s Lost, Titus Andronicus, Three Sisters, Pericles.
Theatre elsewhere: Stags and Hens; The Double Bass (one-man show); War Music (BAC); My Cousin Rachel, Dangerous Corner, Noises Off (Theatre by the Lake); Medea, Trojan Women, Noises Off (National Theatre: tour and West End); Five Sides of a Circle (Tobacco Factory); Schools Tour with Kinetic Theatre.
TV & Film: Inside Men, Mistresses, The Chicken Run, Sweeney Todd.
Radio: Cider with Rosie, Dixon of Dock Green (R4).
JULIA HILLS – Lyubov Ranevskaya
Julia is delighted to be returning to Bristol where she studied English & Drama at the University of Bristol and began her early career as a member of the Bristol Old Vic Theatre Company.
Recent Theatre credits include Goneril in “King Lear” for SATTF, Homily in “The Borrowers” at The Nuffield Theatre Southampton; Ruth and then Annie in the original production of “Calendar Girls” by Tim Firth (Chichester Festival Theatre; Noel Coward Theatre London and National Tour); and Eve in “Flying Under Bridges” (adapted by Sarah Daniels from the novel by Sandi Toksvig) at The Watford Palace. She appeared as Mrs Eynsford Hill in “Pygmalion” at The Royal Exchange Theatre Manchester; Amy Ruskin in “Special Occasions” at The Mill Theatre Sonning, and joined SATTF at the start of 2011 to play both the Duchess of Gloucester and the Duchess of York in Shakespeare’s “Richard II”.
Julia began her career as a Trembling Tree in pantomime at The Theatre Royal York, but managed to progress to less wooden parts at the Theatre Royal Stratford East and two seasons at the Bristol Old Vic. She then moved on to the RSC and other theatre work including the musicals “The Hired Man” (Leicester Haymarket and the West End for which she received an Olivier nomination for Best Actress in a Musical) and “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” playing Drood himself at The Savoy Theatre London.
Television work includes 9 series for the BBC of “2 Point 4 Children” playing Rona and 2 series of “Dad” playing Beryl; both series written by Andrew Marshall. She played all of the women (and some of the men) in 6 series of the Channel 4 Comedy sketch show “Who Dares Wins” during the 1980s, and enjoyed two National tours with the team. She has most recently played Caroline Joyner for almost a year in “Casualty”; and appeared in “Murphy’s Law”; “All in the Game”; “Murder in Suburbia”; “Wipeout” and the third series of “Outnumbered”.
Countless Radio productions include “Revolting People” by Andy Hamilton and the recent serialisations of “Dusty Answer” by Rosamund Lehmann and “Wives and Daughters” by Elizabeth Gaskell for “Woman’s Hour” on Radio 4. Julia can be heard as Annabelle Shrivener in “The Archers”.
For more information, please visit: www.juliahills.co.uk
GEMMA LAWRENCE – Dunyasha
Trained: Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.
Theatre includes: La Marquise de Merteuil in Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Kate in The Wild Party and Miranda in The Tempest (whilst training); The Lion’s Mouth (Royal Court)
TV includes: Misfits (E4), 1066 (Channel 4), Casualty (BBC), Waking the Dead (BBC), Time of Your Life (ITV), Stir It Up (Channel 4), All About George (ITV), Ahead of the Class (ITV)
Film includes: Frail, Bunch of Amateurs, Enlightenment
Radio: Series lead in Ambridge Extra; The Falcon and the Hawk, Chess Girls (all Radio 4)
DOROTHEA MYER-BENNETT - Varya
Training: Bristol Old Vic Theatre School
For SATTF: Regan in King Lear, Celimene in The Misanthrope, Adriana in The Comedy of Errors.
Other Theatre: The Fitzrovia Radio Hour (Gilded Balloon, Edinburgh Festival and tour), Present Laughter (number one tour- Belinda Lang), Transparency (Ransom Theatre-Rachel O'Riordan), Freshwater (Charleston Festival-Jonathan Munby), Hayfever (Manchester Royal Exchange-Greg Hersov), She Stoops to Conquer (Birmingham Rep and number 1 tour-Jonathan Munby), Restoration (Headlong-Rupert Goold), Mendelsshon in Scotland (City of London Sinfonia-Jonathan Best), The Tamer Tamed (The Globe, William Poel Festival-John Hartoch)
TV: Jude the Obscure/Dead Man Talking (BBC)
Film: Checkmate (Future Films)
PAUL NICHOLSON – Firs
“The Cherry Orchard” is his 18th play for SATTF. Paul came to Bristol in 1959 to join The Rapier Players at The Little Theatre (Colston Hall) as ASM and stayed. Seasons at Weston, Swansea, Farnsham, Manchester.
One offs: Babbacombe – Leslie Bromhead “No Sex Please We’re British”, Eye – Mr. Hardcastle “She Stoops To Conquer”, BOV – Rev. Gardener “Mrs Warren’s Profession”, Pantomimes for Porthcawl Pavillion, 7 plays for Show of Strength
Various Television and Radio
Other theatre includes: various Repertories in England and Wales, seven plays for Show of Strength in Bristol and London, and pantomimes. Own one-man show with various television plays, serials, radio and the occasional film.
ROLAND OLIVER - Simeonov-Pishkin
In the thirty-five years after graduating from Oxford in 1965, he worked in theatres all over Britain and made innumerable screen appearances. In 2000 he was a founder member of SATTF, playing King Lear and Bottom in the opening season. He has been in ten productions since, including as Chebutykin in Three Sisters, Polonius in Hamlet and York in Richard II. Other work this century includes Hobson’s Choice (Royal Exchange), Five Sides Of A Circle (Sinai), Justifying War and Called To Account (Tricycle) and Murdered To Death (Ian Dickens Productions).
Television: All The King’s Men, EastEnders, Bad Girls (three series), Chernobyl, Inspector Lynley, Skins, Coronation Street, Casualty, Five Daughters and Law & Order UK. Film: Have No Fear and The Scapegoat.
On radio he has played a French prime minister, a Hungarian grandmaster, a Soho gangster and a crazy Sicilian actor.
BENJAMIN O’MAHONY – Trofimov
Benjamin trained at Drama Centre London, graduating in 2010.
Recent Theatre Credits Include: King Lear (SATTF), 24 Hour Plays (Old Vic); People Like Us (Vineyard Theatre, Broadway); Our Father (Watford Palace Theatre); Unrestless (Old Vic); The Mother (The Scoop); The Emperor Self (Arcola Theatre).
Film Credits Include: The Other Boleyn Girl (Sony Pictures); Chloe (Cannes Film Festival 2012); Leggi Della Causalita (Serie 928); Max 6 (Electric Cinema); Hurst (Jellyfish Media).
Winner of The Lawrence Olivier Bursary Award 2009 and Winner of the Hobsons 2010.
SASKIA PORTWAY - Charlotta
Trained: Bristol University & Welsh College of Music & Drama
For SATTF: Beatrice-Joanna in The Changeling, Macbeth, Regan in King Lear, Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Coriolanus, Mariana in Measure for Measure, Helen & Andromache in Troilus & Cressida, Rosalind in As You Like It
Other Theatre: Coram boy (Bristol Old Vic), Hamlet (The National Theatre), Mariana & Juliet in Measure for Measure (Royal National Theatre), The House of Bernarda Alba (Red Dog)
Radio Includes: Elizabeth Bennett in Mary Mary, Poetry Please (BBC Radio 4)
TV: Narrator in Paris Brothel, Mrs Froy in The Giblet Boys.
PIERS WEHNER- Yasha
Piers graduated from the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School in 2009.
His theatre work includes KING LEAR with SATTF, OH! WHAT A LOVELY WAR and MACHINAL at the Tobacco Factory, ‘Octavius’ in ANTHONY & CLEOPATRA at the Nuffield Southampton Theatre, THE MISANTHROPE at The Bristol Old Vic and most recently ‘Jimmy Porter’ in a mid-scale tour of LOOK BACK IN ANGER directed by Amanda Knott.
Piers has extensive radio credits, and received the BBC Carleton Hobbs award in 2009. Credits include THE CHANGELING for BBC Radio 3, COLD, PLANTAGENET, SHIRLEYMANDER, THE DECOY, GUILTY UNTIL PROVEN INNOCENT, THE MAN IN BLACK, WEIRD TALES, TOO MUCH INFORMATION, SHERLOCK HOLMES, TINKER TAYLOR SOLDIER SPY, THE HONOURABLE SCHOOLBOY, SMILEY’S PEOPLE and BEWARE OF PITY for BBC Radio 4. He was also ‘Jude’ in THE ARCHERS.
ELEANOR YATES - Anya
Eleanor graduated from The Bristol Old Vic Theatre School in 2010.
Theatre includes: Cordelia in King Lear (SATTF), Arrietty in The Borrowers, Tiff in Alchemy in the UK (Nuffield Theatre), Kelly in Microwave (National Theatre Studio) Molly in Love Song (Pleasance Islington/Alma Tavern).
Television includes: The Crimson Petal and the White (Origin/BBC), Case Histories (Ruby FIlms/BBC), Midsomer Murders (ITV), The Mystery of Edwin Drood (BBC), Derren Brown: The Experiments (Objective/Ch 4).