Phil Marriott


Casting Announced For West End Premiere Of The Exorcist

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Forty-five years after William Peter Blatty’s best-selling novel terrified an entire generation, The Exorcist will be unleashed onto the West End stage for the very first time in a theatrical experience directed by Sean Mathias and adapted for the stage by John Pielmeier.

Jenny Seagrove will play Chris MacNeil opposite Peter Bowles as Father Lankester Merrin, Adam Garcia as Father Damien Karras, Clare Louise Connolly as Regan, Todd Boyce as Doctor Strong, Mitchell Mullen as Doctor Klein, Elliot Harper as Father Joe and Tristram Wymark as Burke.

The Exorcist will play a strictly limited run at the Phoenix Theatre from 20 October 2017 to 10 March 2018.

Widely considered the scariest movie of all time, the film adaptation of The Exorcist sparked unprecedented worldwide controversy when it was released in cinemas in 1973. Winner of two Academy Awards, William Friedkin’s masterpiece saw audiences petrified to the point of passing out and went on to become one of the top ten highest grossing films of all time.

When the medical profession fails to provide answers to young Regan’s strange symptoms her desperate mother Chris turns to a local priest for help. But before Father Damien can tackle what’s before him, he must overcome his own shaken beliefs, as this fight is for more than just one girl’s soul…

Peter Bowles, star of stage, film and television, will play Father Lankester Merrin – the Exorcist of the title. Peter’s West End theatre credits include Hay Fever with Judi Dench at Theatre Royal Haymarket, Archie Rice in John Osborne’s The Entertainer (Shaftesbury) and several leading roles in classic plays for Sir Peter Hall. He is probably best remembered for playing the role of Richard DeVere in the hit BBC comedy series To The Manor Born as well as leading roles in The Irish RM, The Bounder, Rumpole of the Bailey and Only When I Laugh. Peter can currently be seen on ITV’s Victoria as the Duke of Wellington.

Jenny Seagrove, one of the UK’s most respected actresses, will be playing the role of Chris, the mother of Regan, who suffers emotional turmoil in the search to find help for her daughter’s ever increasing strange behaviour. Her prolific theatre career has seen her play the lead in almost every West End playhouse, with recent credits including Alan Ayckbourn’s How The Other Half Loves at the Haymarket, Brief Encounter, Volcano, Tennessee Williams’ Night Of The Iguana, David Rabe’s Hurlyburly and The Country Girl with Martin Shaw. Jenny recently appeared as Louisa Gould in the film Another Mother’s Son but perhaps is best known to TV viewers as QC Jo Mills in ITV’s BAFTA award winning Judge John Deed.

Adam Garcia plays Father Damien Karras. Adam is a two-time Olivier Award nominee, was last seen in the West End in the Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company’s The Winter’s Tale (Garrick) and recently starred in the world premiere of Kevin Elyot’s last play Twilight Song (Park Theatre, London). Musical stage credits include Kiss Me Kate, directed by Trevor Nunn (Chichester/Old Vic); Fiyero in the original London cast of Wicked with Idina Menzel (Apollo Victoria), Chip in On The Town (London Coliseum) and Tony Manero in Saturday Night Fever (London Palladium). Adam gained international recognition for leading roles in films including Coyote Ugly and Riding in Cars with Boys with Drew Barrymore, and he appears in Kenneth Branagh’s forthcoming film adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express.

Director Sean Mathias has worked at the National Theatre and many times in the West End and on Broadway, as well as extensively internationally. In 2009/2010 Sean’s production of Waiting For Godot played two seasons at the Theatre Royal Haymarket and toured the UK and internationally. In 2013 Godot played Broadway along with his production of Pinter’s No Man’s Land, the latter transferring to Wyndham’s Theatre in October 2016 starring Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart, and won Best Revival at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards that year.

● The Exorcist starts a strictly limited run at the Phoenix Theatre from 20 October 2017.


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Five Vegan Places In London We All Need To Check Out

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That’s what friends are for. They know you are passionate about your plant-based diet and they frequently tag you on the latest vegan restaurant posts, or include your name in the comments section of a news share about a new meat and dairy free cafe in town.

Which is handy because we’ve compiled a list of five vegan places to eat (or venues with a vegan menu) that we – and hopefully you – need to check out, pronto! Granted, they are all in London, but hey – we are LDN Vegans. Do you know of any outside the capital that we should investigate? Let us know.

Top 5 - No.5

Livin’ On The Veg, Kings Cross
We love a good pun, and the guys at Livin’ On The Veg have come up with a cracker! Their street food festival will see eight traders set up their stalls in King’s Cross over August 18th and 19th to cook-up the most indulgent and inventive vegan dishes they can in a bid to be crowned the tastiest of them all. We love the sound of the chocolate peanut butter mud brownies.  Tickets…

Top 5 - No.4Pied à Tierre, Fitzrovia
A tad on the pricey side if you’re strapped for cash, but one glance at their vegan menu will make your mouth water. Pied à Terre is an independently owned West End gastronomic restaurant located in the heart of Fitzrovia, London W1. Whilst the menu looks a little non-specfic when it comes to how the food is served, their plant-based choices are more imaginative than most restaurants, especially with such items as the Wye Valley Asparagus, Hazelnut and Watercress. More…

Top 5 - No.3

V Burger, Camden Market
At the start of this month, Camden Market welcomed a new vegan burger bar called V Burger – a mini bar or ‘bar-let’ (can we invent that name?) offering a menu of entirely vegan plant-based burgers, developed by London chef Yossi Edri. Currently, they offer three vegan burgers – one beetroot, one falafel, and one seitan, the latter of which is a refreshing addition as many eateries tend to favour falafel; and we do get a little bored with that! All burgers have the option of adding avocado or vegan cheese. It’s a big YES from us! More…

V Burger
V Burger / Camden Market

Top 5 - No.2Farmacy, Notting Hill
We love to be proven wrong, which explains why this hotspot is so high up on the list. When we first heard about Farmacy (based in London’s Notting Hill), we thought we’d probably stick out like sore thumbs.

A certain particularly scathing review online recently more or less suggested that this is the place to go if you’re someone who worships Deliciously Ella, thinks you’re more important than everyone else, and is keen on eating what looks like cardboard as your main meal. To us, the critic of that piece sounds like someone who is vehemently anti-vegan, so we’ll wait to judge for ourselves.

Farmacy is inspired by dishes from all over the world, catering to both a vegan and vegetarian diet, organic, free from dairy and refined sugars. On the menu are soups, salads, pasta and pizza. They also serve the current trend at the moment – ‘Earth Bowls’, which are packed with lentils, falafels (yawn) and sweet potato. Worth noting that for every bowl purchased they will donate £1 to dropfordrop. More…

Top 5 - No.1The Sound Lounge, Tooting
Claiming the top spot is The Sound Lounge, an independent music and arts venue that is passionate about independent music, the arts and social responsibility. We haven’t been yet, but we did mention it in our latest video (check it out below). We are very optimistic about this place as Phil has previously worked with Hannah (who runs the venue) and knows how enthusiastic and lovely she is!

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The Sound Lounge, Tooting, London

What’s even more promising is that this is a café, bar and restaurant which specialises in quality ethically and locally sourced vegan food (the menu is 100% vegan!) According to their website, their “mission is to create a space that nurtures independent artists and allows music and arts to be enjoyed and explored whilst enjoying great food and drink and excellent customer service.” This place has our hearts all over it! More…

So there we have it! Those are 5 vegan or vegan-friendly places to check out. You never know, we might even review these places on future videos. Talking of which, here’s our latest vlog….

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