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Casting announced for Salisbury Playhouse's regional premiere of Suffragette drama

The cast of Her Naked Skin
09 August 2018

Casting has been announced for Wiltshire Creative’s production of Her Naked Skin at Salisbury Playhouse. The regional premiere of Rebecca Lenkiewicz’s epic play marks the centenary of women being given the right to vote and runs from 4 – 20 October.

Abigail Cruttenden plays Celia in the production while Lorna Fitzgerald plays Eve.

Abigail Cruttenden’s stage credits include The Seagull for Headlong, Accolade at St James’s Theatre and An Enemy of the People at Chichester Festival Theatre. She is familiar to television audiences for her appearances opposite Lee Mack in the BBC’s Not Going Out.

Lorna Fitzgerald played Abi Branning in EastEnders for 12 years from 2005. Earlier this year she made her professional stage debut in The Shadow Factory at Nuffield Southampton Theatres.

Robert Hands plays Celia’s husband, William. His credits include Committee at The Donmar and Mrs Henderson Presents in the West End. He also appeared in the 2017 production of Betrayal at Salisbury Playhouse.

Jane How plays Florence and is returning to Salisbury Playhouse following her performance as Mrs Railton-Bell in the hit 2014 production of Separate Tables. She recently appeared in the Chichester Festival Theatre and West End production of Half a Sixpence and is still remembered for her appearances as the mistress of Den Watts in the BBC’s EastEnders.

The cast is completed by Nathan Armarkwai-Laryea, Rebecca Cooper, Ewen Cummins, Christopher Ettridge, Simon Markey and Georgina Sutton.

First produced at the National Theatre in 2008, Her Naked Skin is a thrilling story of the Suffrage Movement in Edwardian Britain. A company of more than 20 local women has been cast to perform alongside the professional cast.

Set in London in 1913 when militancy in the suffragette movement was at its height, the play follows Lady Celia Cain, one of hundreds of women of all classes who served time in Holloway Prison in their fight to gain the vote. Celia feels trapped by both the policies of the day and the shackles of a frustrating marriage. Inside the prison she meets a young seamstress, Eve Douglas, and her life spirals into erotic but dangerous chaos.

Rebecca Lenkiewicz’s uplifting and funny play captures the sense of liberation and belonging which drew women to the Suffragettes’ cause and the new ways in which women could connect within the confines of Edwardian society. Her Naked Skin also explores the human drama behind the Suffragettes: the personal sacrifices made by women in the fight for the right to vote; the costs to women’s families, relationships and health.

Her Naked Skin is directed by Wiltshire Creative Artistic Director Gareth Machin and the designer is Dawn Allsopp (Murder, Margaret and Me, Dangerous Corner – Salisbury Playhouse). Lighting is by Johanna Town and sound is by Michael Scott. Harry Blake is the musical supervisor.

Her Naked Skin runs in the Main House of Salisbury Playhouse from 4 to 20 October. Tickets are on sale now and can be booked by calling Ticket Sales on 01722 320333 or by visiting


For press enquiries please contact Lucy Rouse, PR & Communications Officer, on 01722 345166 or

Notes to Editors:

Her Naked Skin

By Rebecca Lenkiewicz

A Wiltshire Creative production
Directed by Gareth Machin
Salisbury Playhouse – Thursday 4 October – Saturday 20 October
Press performance – Tues 9 October 7.30pm


Although 2018 marks 100 years since some women were given the right to vote (they had to own property), the national celebrations have focussed on the Suffragists. The first statue of a woman in Parliament Square, unveiled in April this year, is of Millicent Fawcett*, a Suffragist. The more militant Suffragettes were considered terrorists at the time – there are no statues of the Pankhursts. Her Naked Skin explores the Suffragettes’ history.

* Millicent Fawcett was married to Henry Fawcett, a Liberal MP who was born in Salisbury and whose statue stands in the city’s Market Square.

Wiltshire Creative is a new pan-arts organisation that brings together the energy and ambition of Salisbury Arts Centre, Salisbury International Arts Festival and Salisbury Playhouse. It is an ambitious and innovative joint arts offer that secures a bright future for audiences, artists and participants.

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