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Casting Update for Colchester Theatre’s Reopening Show

Mercury Theatre, led by Executive Director, Steve Mannix and Executive Producer, Tracey Childs, have announced a casting update for Ken Ludwig’s BASKERVILLE! as part of the company’s opening season in its newly refurbished venue, following two years of closure to reimagine and improve accessibility throughout the theatre. The production opens on 5 August, with previews from 30 July, and runs until 22 August and is directed by Creative Director of Mercury Theatre Ryan McBryde.

Naomi Peterson joins the company in the role of Miss Stapleton and others, joining the previously announced Richard Ede (Sherlock Holmes), Marc Pickering (Stapleton and others), Eric Stroud (Doctor Watson), Naomi Peterson (Miss Stapleton and others), Phil Yarrow (Sir Henry and others). Peterson replaces Eva Jane Willis who had to withdraw due to prior commitments being rescheduled.

40 characters. 5 actors. 1 madcap adventure for the world’s most famous detective!

This is a thrilling new look at Sherlock Holmes. On the murky moors of Devonshire, heirs to the Baskerville name are being killed, one by one. Some say it’s a family curse. Some say it’s a murderous hellhound. Some say it’s a load of old nonsense. A case like this can be solved by only one man…or…actually…two – so don your deerstalkers because Holmes and Watson are on the case!

This fast-paced, laugh out loud comedy sees our intrepid duo try to crack their most notorious case with the help of a tangled web of clues, silly accents, disguises and deceit as five actors deftly portray more than forty characters. Will our heroes discover the truth in time? Will they fall foul of the demon hellhound? Will they get all the costume changes right?

Richard Ede plays Sherlock Holmes. His theatre credits include The 39 Steps (Criterion Theatre, UK tour), Shackleton and his Stowaway (Park Theatre), It’s a Wonderful Life (Farnham Maltings), Little History of the World (Watermill Theatre), Arsenic and Old Lace (Nottingham Theatre Royal), Normal (Styx Theatre), The Wife of Bath (Rude Mechanical Theatre Company), The Bible (Reduced Shakespeare Company UK tour), The Ruling Class (English Theatre Frankfurt), and Much Ado About Nothing, The Taming of the Shrew, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (National Theatre Company world tours). His television credits include Lord Lucan: My Husband The Truth, Cuckoo and Modern Manners.

Marc Pickering plays Stapleton and others. His theatre credits include The Elephant Man and An Incident at the Border (Trafalgar Studios), The Merchant of Venice (Arcola Theatre), The Return of the Soldier (Hope Mill Theatre), The Toxic Avenger and Bananaman (Southwark Playhouse), How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Wilton’s Music Hall), Mother Goose (Marlowe Theatre), Night of the Living Dead Live and The Long and The Short and The Tall (Pleasance Theatre). For television, his credits include BORGIA III, Dalziel and Pascoe and Cricklewood Greats; for film, Les Misérables, To Be Someone, Brothers of Italy, A Viking Saga: The Darkest Day, Calendar Girls and Sleepy Hollow.

Naomi Petersen plays Miss Stapleton and others. Her theatre credits include The Girl Next Door, Birthdays Past, Birthdays Present, Joking Apart, Better Off Dead (Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough), By Jeeves (The Old Laundry Theatre), The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (Ambassadors Theatre), I Am Telling You I’m Not Going (Pleasance Theatre), Tender Loving Care (New Theatre Royal Portsmouth), The Witches of Eastwick (Watermill), Ashes (Arcola Theatre), Angus, Thongs and Even More Snogging (West Yorkshire Playhouse) and Schnapps (Lyric Hammersmith).

Eric Stroud plays Doctor Watson. A LAMDA graduate, his theatre credits include The Snow Queen (Yvonne Arnaud Theatre.)

Phil Yarrow plays Sir Henry and others. His theatre credits include Jeeves and Wooster in Perfect Nonsense (The Frinton Summer Theatre). His television credits include The Split, and The Dumping Ground.

BASKERVILLE! is at the Mercury Theatre, Colchester from 30 July – 22 August 2021.

Note: Relaxed Performance: 18 August at 2.30pm / Touch Tour: 19 August at 1pm / Audio Described: 19 August at 2.30pm / Captioned Performance: 20 August at 7.30pm

For more information or to book call the Box Office on 01206 573948 or visit


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