Casting announced for Brief Encounter at Newbury's The Watermill theatre

brief encounter

Casting has been announced for a new production of Brief Encounter at Newbury’s Watermill theatre.

Emma Rice’s stage adaptation of Noël Coward’s epic love story, based on the critically acclaimed 1945 film, will play at The Watermill from Thursday 14 October to Saturday 13 November.


Laura Lake Adebisi will star as ‘Laura Jesson’ alongside Oliver Aston as ‘Stanley / Johnnie’, Charles Angiama as ‘Albert Godby / Fred’, Max Gallagher as ‘Bobbie/Bill/Stephen Lynn’, Hanna Khogali as ‘Beryl / Dolly’, Callum McIntyre as ‘Alec Harvey’, and Kate Milner-Evans as ‘Myrtle Bagot’.

“I want to remember every minute. Always.”

A chance meeting between Laura and Alec in a train station tearoom leads to an impossible love affair. Engulfed by a sea of emotions, will they be swept ashore together, or will the tides of change pull them apart?

Based on the critically acclaimed film, Noël Coward’s timeless tale of happiness and heartache is reimagined for the stage in a dazzling new production of this epic love story. With music and movement to make your heart soar, this playful and inventive production will take you by the hand and whisk you on a journey through all of love’s beautiful complications.

The new production is directed by Robert Kirby, with design by Harry Pizzey, movement by Anjali Mehra, musical direction, compositions and arrangements by Eamonn O’Dwyer, lighting by Ali Hunter, sound design by Yvonne Gilbert. Ruth Sullivan is the Foley Sound Consultant and the Show Musical Director is Max Gallagher. The stage management team are Rose Burston (DSM), Anna Reid (ASM) and Caitlin Ravenscroft (ASM).

Director Robert Kirby said: “It’s a delight to continue to welcome audiences inside the beautiful Watermill theatre with Brief Encounter. Although we know it as the film, Brief Encounter started its life as a one act play and, after many months of us leaning into our screens for entertainment over the pandemic, it feels like the perfect time to take it back to its roots and celebrate the theatrical heart of the piece.

“The intimacy of The Watermill’s auditorium provides a perfect setting to transport audiences to our tearoom at Milford Junction station whilst inviting them to feel the joy, excitement and heartbreak experienced by our characters. Our talented team, both offstage and on, can’t wait to throw open the doors to welcome you to Brief Encounter.”

For audience members who would feel more comfortable to attend a performance with more space between themselves and other audience members there will be socially distanced performances each week during the run.

To book tickets and for more information visit

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