Sir Ian McKellen has recorded the voice of ‘The Book’ for a small theatre production of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying at Olney Theatre Center. Olney is a town in Maryland about 20 miles north of Washington DC.
Back in 1987 Sir Ian had spent time at Olney Theatre Center with his one-man show Acting Shakespeare. Sir Ian had raised money for the theatre by selling T-shirts with a picture of Shakespeare on, which Sir Ian signed. He raised almost $7,000, which was spent on air conditioning for the intern’s accommodation and repainting and re-carpeting the backstage areas and dressing rooms.
With this story in mind, Colney Theatre’s artistic director, Jason Loewith, felt inspired to approach Sir Ian for help after he had been to see one of his plays on Broadway.
Speaking to the Washington Post Sir Ian said, “I’ve always had a soft spot for Olney, and it’s lovely to be able to make another contact. Looking at the shows they are putting on, it seems the theatre is thriving.”
Sir Ian said of his part in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, “They mustn’t get too excited. My contribution I don’t think is a vital one. It’s a little something extra.”
How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying is at the Colney Theatre Center 29 January to 23 February, 2014.