A new stage adaption of George Orwell’s bleak 1984 vision has added some extra star power, this time in the form of legendary Doctor Who actor, Tom Baker.
Well, his voice that is.
Those hearing Orwell’s dystopian overlord in the adaption set to take the Princess Theatre stage in June might recognise the 4th Doctor, who played the character between 1974 and 1981.
The 85-year-old Baker will provide the voice of Big Brother for the show, recording the lines from his home in the United Kingdom.
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“Initially, I hoped to persuade Tom to make the long journey from the UK to Tasmania, but having him record his lines exclusively for the show will do nicely,” said Stephen Beckett, the show’s Launceston-based producer and director.
“For me, Tom Baker was the Doctor Who, the one I grew up with and loved – the man with the hat and the scarf and the jelly babies.”
Another big name joining Baker’s voice will be veteran journalist and broadcaster Kerry O’Brien as The Narrator, somebody with the “gravitas” Mr Beckett wanted for the on-stage role.
The two will be joined by a cast of Launceston-based actors and a piece of stage art created by high school students from around the region.
Mr Beckett is direct about what audiences can expect from the upcoming show.
“It’s bleak, depressing and there’s no happy ending,” he says.
“But there’s a love story, and there’s Tom Baker and Kerry O’Brien, and some very talented local actors, so that’s something.”
Tickets for 1984 are on sale now from the Princess Theatre.
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