News is in that Rowan Atkinson is to return to stage in 2013 in a play called “Quartermaine’s Terms”
This will be the first time Rowan Atkinson has appeared in a serious play in the West End since 1988 when he was in in a series of Anton Chekhov plays at the Aldwych Theatre, although he prominently performed as the first Fagin in the 2009 version of the musical Oliver!
Rowan Atkinson (Blackadder, Mr Bean) is confirmed to play the lead title role, a hapless teacher called St John Quartermaine.
Quartermaine’s Terms will be staged at the Wyndham’s theatre in London’s West End from 23rd January 2013 for twelve weeks only, taking it up to 13th April 2013. It’s a play by by Simon Gray and directed by Richard Eyre, which takes place over a period of two years in the 1960s in the staff room of an English language school in Cambridge. The play has previously aired as a TV film in 1987 starring Eleanor Bron, Edward Fox and John Gielgud and has also been produced as a BBC Radio 4 radio play in 2006 with Michael Palin as Quartermaine .
Set in the 1960s in a school for teaching English as another language, this tragic comedic play is a humourous but ultimately moving account of several years in the lives of seven teachers.
At the heart of the group is St. John Quartermaine (Rowan Atkinson) – kind, pleasant and agreeable, but utterly hopeless as a teacher. An almost permanent feature in the staff room, he’s always available to listen to the problems of his self-obsessed colleagues. But when a new Principal is appointed, Quartermaine’s future looks precarious…
This quintessentially English drama is written by Simon Gray with his characteristic incisive wit.