The Understudy

Fri 26 Jun 20

Written by Henry Filloux-Bennett based on the novel by David Nicholls
Director: Giles Croft

National treasure Stephen FryRussell Tovey (Years and Years and The History Boys), Emily Atack (The Inbetweeners and I’m a Celebrity), Sarah Hadland (Miranda), Layton Williams (Bad Education and Everybody’s Talking about Jamie) and Mina Anwar (The Thin Blue Line and Shirley Valentine) star in this two-part online play. You can now watch both parts of The Understudy by booking a ticket today.

Actor Stephen McQueen has just landed a dream West End role. Well, that’s not quite true – what he’s going to be is understudying film star (and 12th Sexiest Man in the World) Josh Harper in the brand new show Mad, Bad and Dangerous to Know, but still…

Whilst he’s waiting for his time to shine, he reflects on his career – one that has spanned everything from (non-speaking) Rent Boy 3 in The Bill to his recent starring role as Sammy in the (low-budget) regional tour of Sammy The Squirrel’s Seriously Silly Safari.

With this new job Stephen’s stage career may be destined for the dizzying heights, but not everything is going quite as well. Stephen’s wife left him two years ago, wondering if he’d ever grow up; his daughter wonders when he’ll get an actual job; worst of all, he’s starting to fall for the leading man’s wife.

The Understudy is the story of an underdog – a failed husband, a failing father, a failing actor, and the impossible choice he’s going to have to make between stealing the show and stealing another man’s wife.

The play aims to raise much needed funds for the UK’s theatre industry, and all proceeds from the play will be split between Acting For Others, the Equity Charitable Trust, Equity’s Benevolent Fund and The Theatre Development Trust, run by the Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre.

How it will all work

The Understudy is an online play – part radio play, part animated film. You could choose just to listen to it, but you will also be able to watch it.  The play is in two parts. You can enjoy both parts by booking a ticket today. You only need one ticket to access both parts of the play. After you’ve bought your ticket you don’t need to do anything else. You will receive a booking confirmation containing links to both parts of the play, and you just need to click on those links to watch The Understudy –  once booking you can watch the play up until the 26 June.

*Please note, The Understudy contains strong language and sexual content.

Event Details



Running time:

2 hours 0 minutes

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