Chekhov masterpiece reunites Horwich actor with his Coronation Street murderer

Chekhov masterpiece reunites Horwich actor with his Coronation Street murderer

David Crellin as Colin Fishwick in Coronation Street, right, with Graeme Hawley (John Stape).

David Crellin

First published in News
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The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author by , entertainment reporter

A BOLTON actor who appeared in Coronation Street is back on stage in a critically-acclaimed adaptation of a Chekhov masterpiece.

David Crellin, who lives in Horwich, is starring in the Library Theatre Company’s production of The Seagull at The Lowry, Salford Quays, until March 8.

The play also features Graeme Hawley, familiar to TV viewers as Coronation Street serial-killer John Stape, whose first victim — Colin Fishwick — was played by David.

The 52-year-old, who also played Billy Hopwood in Emmerdale and Alan Wakefield in BAFTA award-winning series The Cops, said: “It’s good to be back with Graeme Hawley. He murdered me in Corrie, I was his first victim. I’ve worked with him a few times and he’s great to work with.

“The play itself is about unfulfilled relationships. It’s got 10 characters and none of them are truly satisfied but none of them have real reason to complain.

“They have a very good life but they always want a little bit more. They have these desires for things which are very desirable but not essential and I think we are much like that today.

"The dream gets sold to us. We are told that certain things will make you feel better. We want these symbols, we want to be looked upon and admired.

“The play is essentially driven by sex and desire.”

Written by Russian dramatist Anton Chekhov in 1895, The Seagull has been adapted and modernised by British playwright Anya Reiss.

It tells the story of a famous actress and her celebrated novelist lover who visit the isolated country estate of her brother.

The trip plunges the family into a torrent of tensions, both comic and dramatic, particularly when her insecure son tries to impress her with a play he has written.

David, who recently appeared in Radio 4 drama Craven alongside Maxine Peake, said: “This was in the period when we started writing plays about more ordinary people.

“They tried to be more about real people and ordinary lives and their dreams and aspirations.”

He says the play’s themes are pertinent to today’s culture where some people dream of appearing on shows like X Factor or The Voice in a bid to find instant stardom.

David, who plays Shamrayev, the estate manager, said: “People want to be on television, singing. No one wants to work at becoming an artist, they want to be famous.

“It’s brilliant, the way these themes still exist.”

David, who is originally from Sheffield, first started in youth theatre at the age of 20. His first job was in Manchester and he has worked with the Library Theatre Company’s artistic director, Chris Honer, eight times.

He said: “I think it’s nice being on the edge of Greater Manchester in Horwich, where we are, I love the hills.

“I cycle to the railway station and see deer. It’s a beautiful place.”

The Seagull began its first run outside of London at The Lowry, Salford Quays, on Friday and is on until March 8.

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