The Last Pilgrim depicts a fictional encounter between Bobby Kennedy and three reporters who have gathered in the Ambassador’s Hotel, Los Angeles to interview the man tipped to become Democratic candidate for the 1968 presidential race. They are: Tom Quinn, a disillusioned Irish-American, James Gordon, a black activist – played by NYASHA HATENDI – and Nancy Buckman, an anti-war liberal.
Over the course of a memorable evening the three will discover a man transformed by grief who might just have saved his country from Richard Nixon and many more years of the Vietnam War. But this is not just a biographical, historical play about the life of Bobby Kennedy: as the personal drama surrounding the three reporters unfolds and becomes entwined with Bobby’s enigmatic story, a powerful and timely reflection of current hopes for our political leaders emerges.
The cast includes Nyesha Hatendi who recently appeared in The Brothers Size at the Young Vic, Brendan Hughes whose career spans Hollywood and the West End, and Electra (Young Vic), Sean Patterson not only has an uncanny resemblance to Bobby Kennedy but he also played Jesus in Anthony Neilson’s Tired Old Jesus (Apollo), and Gabriella Santinelli whose credits include the world premiere of Jerry Springer – The Opera (NT/West End). See following page for full cast biographies.
Roy Smiles became interested in Bobby Kennedy after reading a book of his speeches, Make Gentle The Life Of This World, and he was inspired to write The Last Pilgrim after seeing Sean Patterson as Nick in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Aldwych).
On Bobby’s role in the civil rights movement, Roy Smiles writes "Perhaps Bobby Kennedy’s greatest moment came when, after the death of Martin Luther King, leaving their problems in the past aside, he spoke movingly and spontaneously to a crowd of angry Afro-Americans in Indianapolis on the night of King’s assassination. Riots broke out in all the major American cities that night but not in Indianapolis. "
Nyasha Hatendi’s extensive credits include Resistable Rise of Arturo Ui Lyric Hammersmith. Pericles RSC, WInter’s Tale RSC. TV credits include Blood and Oil for BBC 2, Silent Witness BBC One, No.1 Ladies Detective Agency BBC/HBO. Film credits include The Ghost and No Money. Radio credits include, for the BBC, The Way We Live Right Now, Portrait of a Lady, Piper Alpha, The Postman of Good Hope
The multi award-winning White Bear Theatre is one of London’s most successful fringe theatres with powerful new writing regularly achieving critical acclaim.
THE LAST PILGRIM
By Roy Smiles
Directed by Tim Stark
Designed by Alexanda Beeden
Nyasha Hatendi, Brendan Hughes, Sean Patterson, Gabriella Santinelli
Press night Wednesday 29 September at 7.30pm
Venue: The White Bear Theatre, 138 Kennington Park Road, London SE11 4DJ
Dates: Tuesday 28 September – Sunday 23 October
Times: Tuesday – Saturday at 7.30pm, Sundays at 6pm
Please note the final performance on 23 October is at 6.30pm
Tickets: £13 / £10 concs
Box office: 020 7793 9193 / www.whitebeartheatre.co.uk
For more information, publicity images and review tickets, please contact
Sheridan Humphreys 07966 578 607