Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch autumn 2021 season

Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch is delighted to announce that the first show of its autumn 2021 season will be a revival of the National Theatre’s 2017 production of Beginning by David Eldridge. This ‘gorgeous new play’ (Independent) has been eagerly waiting in the wings since last September.

Amanda Ryan, best known for her role on Channel 4’s Shameless as Sgt. Carrie Roger, will play Laura in Beginning. Ryan’s numerous acting credentials include the BBC adaptation of Adam Kay’s This is Going to Hurt starring Ben Whishaw, Harriet Walter and Alex Jennings, due for release later this autumn; Casualty (BBC); The Forsyte Saga (Granada Television). For the big screen, Ryan has starred alongside Bob Hoskins, Anthony Head and John Shrapnel in the rom-com Sparkle and with Cate Blanchett in the Academy Award-winning film Elizabeth. Ryan has performed in many theatre productions including plays at the following prestigious London venues: the Criterion Theatre, the Playhouse Theatre, Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre and the National Theatre.


Simon Darwen will be playing Danny in Beginning. Darwen’s TV credits include Russell T Davies’ Years and Years for BBC/HBO starring Emma Thompson, Rory Kinnear and Russell Tovey; The Bletchley Circle, Silent Witness and the BBC’s Call the Midwife. His theatre credits include Missing People (Leeds Playhouse/National Theatre Tokyo), King Lear (Theatre Royal Bath), Mad About the Boy (Young Vic), Lizzie Siddal (Arcola), Love Love Love (Paines Plough), Our Country’s Good (Out of Joint) and The Merchant of Venice (RSC).


Every story starts somewhere… It’s the early hours of the morning and Danny from Upminster is the last straggler at Laura’s party. The flat’s in a mess. And so are they. One more drink? 

Beginning takes a touching look at the first fragile moments of risking your heart and taking a chance. 

This will be the second play of David Eldridge’s produced by Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, with 2019’s homecoming revival of In Basildon playing to national critical acclaim. Beginning will play at Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch from 3 – 18 September 2021.  

This tender and funny critically acclaimed smash hit received its world premiere at the National Theatre before transferring to the West End. It’s being revived and relaunched in Hornchurch before embarking on a national tour.

Author: Paul Middleton

Paul is a Ward Councillor for St. Andrews & Hornchurch Resident's Association Executive member.

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