Anything L.A. Liberal Magazine
May 052014
 

Ahmanson Theatre The Last ConfessionRICHARD O’CALLAGHAN JOINS THE CAST OF “THE LAST CONFESSION” Replaces the Previously Announced Brian Bedford in the Role of Pope John Paul I U.S. Premiere Opens June 11 at the CTG/ Ahmanson Theatre
Eminent British actor Richard O’Callaghan will replace Brian Bedford as Pope John Paul I in “The Last Confession,” a gripping new play of intrigue and mystery which begins previews on June 7 and opens in its United States premiere at the Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre on June 11, 20 14. Bedford ,who was previously announced for the role
has withdrawn from the production due to illness. Richard O Callaghan created the part of Pope John Paul I in Roger Crane’s “The Last Confession” at London’s Theatre Royal Haymarket , receiving excellent reviews . He will appear once again with David Suchet (best known as Hercule Poirot in the eponymously named, award – winning TV series) on this international tour directed by Jonathan Church and featuring a cast of actors frm Canada, USA, Australia and the U .K. O’Callaghan’s performance was widely a claimed: “Richa rd O’ Callaghan is excellent,” said Georgia Brown, Mail On Sunday ;

“Richard O’Callaghan is impressive as the kind and unworldly John Paul,” according to Fiona Mountford, London Evening Standard;and “Richard O’Callaghan as Pope John Paul shows the Pope as a powerful man intent on reform. His is an exceptional performance,”said Paul Callan,Daily Express .O’Callaghan has starred in numerous London productions including  “Amadeus ”at Her Majesty’s Theatre , Haymarket ;“Butley ” at the Criterion Theatre ;“Three Months Gone ” at the Royal Court Theatre ;“Twelfth Night ” at the Regents Park Theatre and “Titus Andronicus”at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. Producer Paul Elliott said,“It is a great shame tha t Brian Bedford cannot be with this unique adventure and we wish him a good and swift recovery. We are fortunat e and excited to have Richard O’Callaghan reprising his London performance .”Set within the corridors of power in the Vatican, “The Last Confes si on” explores the circumstances surrounding the sudden death of Pope John Paul I in 1978.

He died only 33 days after being elected and before he could set his liberal reforms into place. Suspicions are aroused when it is revealed that the new Pope had warne d three of his most influential but hostile Cardinals that they would be replaced on the evening before his death. The Vatican refuses to conduct an official investigation into the death but the politically savvy Cardinal Giovanni Benelli  (played by Suchet ), who had engineered the election of Pope John Paul I, is determined to find the truth.

Richard O’Callaghan replaces Brian Bedford in “The Last Confession”– 22 Charles Spencer of the Daily Telegraph said about “The Last Confession,”“What a pleasure to encounter such an ambitious new play – a conspiracy thriller and murder mystery that manages the rare feat of being as intelligent as it’s entertaining …What a superb actor Suchet is, at once subtle and charismatic, and with a rare gift for discovering the humanity of the characters he plays.” “The Last Confession” is produced by Paul Elliott, Duncan C. Weldon and Liza McLean.It premiered at the Chich ester Festival Theatre in April 2007 and then transferred to London’s Wes t End in June of the same year.

Presented as part of the Mark Taper Forum subscription season, this Chich ester Festival Theatre production is also a bonus option to Ahmanson season ticket holders. Following the Los Angeles run, the tour will continue to Perth, Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney; Australia. Tickets for “The Last Confession” are currently available on subscription only.

For tickets and information, please call (213) 972 – 4444 or visit CenterTheatreGroup.org

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