Meet Jack Bannell

04 Aug 2017, Posted by admin in Latest3

Jack Bannell plays the dual role or Dr Henry Jekyll and Edward Hyde in Blackeyed Theatre’s forthcoming UK tour. We spoke to him about his approach to the role and hopes for the production.

What are you looking forward to most about The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde?

Jack BannellThe complexity of the character without a doubt. Every part I have ever played has been an exercise in finding the duality and inner struggle of a character. To have two conflicting emotions about the same thing is what it means to be a complicated emotional human, It’s what makes Humans so unpredictable and fascinating, and hopefully lead to dramatic choices that are not the obvious, predictable ones to make; however, rarely do you get the opportunity to take those dual emotions and polarize them into two different “people”… Or are they different people?

You’ll be playing the dual role of Jekyll/Hyde in this production. How do you approach creating characters that audiences are so familiar with?

Personally I think the only way to approach a well-known character is to pretend they are not well known. Much like approaching a well-known Shakespeare monologue, If you let the gravity of “to be or not to be” or “I know a bank where the wild time blows” get to you, you can double guess yourself, over complicate everything and end up in a right mess. All characters are a person, in a situation, trying to achieve something…if they are famous or not. 

What do you hope audiences will take from seeing the show?

I think the job of theatre is to make people think about what it is to be human and how we treat each other. This fantastic adaptation is crammed full of questions: What is it to struggle with two sides of your own brain? How responsible are you for your actions if you don’t feel like yourself as your doing them? How far can you justify inflicting harm on a few in order to benefit the many? As long as the audience walk away knowing a bit more about how they feel about any of the issues in this play I’ll be very happy.

Which places on the tour do you have links with?

Well from the dates of the first half of the tour, Didcot is very close to where I was brought up and still live, and my mum and dad are originally both from the Portsmouth area.


Jack trained at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.

His theatre credits include Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Watch Your Head), Valentine in Two Gentlemen of Verona, Dr Pinch in The Comedy of Errors, Henry Percy in Richard II and Richmond in Richard III (Tobacco Factory), Proculeius in Antony And Cleopatra (Chichester Festival Theatre), Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Slender in The Merry Wives of Windsor (Guildford Shakespeare Company), Ben Budge in Beggar’s Opera (Regents Park), John Proctor in The Crucible (Bristol Old Vic) & Don John in Much Ado About Nothing (Vienna’s English Theatre).

His television credits include Franklin in Upstairs Downstairs (BBC).

  • Maureen haig

    Absolutely fabulous performance in kirkcaldy on Thursday. Can’t believe how 4 people managed the full play. Your are all amazing

  • Tony Duke

    Saw your production in Hastings last night and was totally enthralled by the whole performance. Not only was the acting incredible but also the set and the costumes. I will certainly be looking out for future productions from your team. Brilliant thank you.

  • Rebecca Foucher

    I came away watching that performance tonight at town gate and was inspired to create my diverse and naturalistic contemporary piece of theatre for my direction unit you all four actors were amazing really inspirational I am a second year acting student and I was absolutely blown away with the amount of techniques applied to this piece from shiolutte sequences, physical slow motion to physicalolgical gestures it was a very fresh and unique adaption of the original story and Jack who played the main portaginst was amazing and extremely professional very realistic and believable when changing character physically and mentally method acting technique was effect as well as all the technical aspect of the show from the glow in the dark writing to the red washes of lighting on stage to help bring out the sinister feel to the piece.

    I commend the entire cast can’t wait to come see another production of yours well done all x

  • K, Hutton

    Have just seen Dr Jekyll at Broadway Theatre Barking. Clever and articulate script , Very thought provoking and intellectually stimulating.
    Brilliant acting by extremely talented cast. Excellent sound effects and music. A first class production.

  • Padma Ogara

    Saw the play in Llandudno tonight I feel it was the best, well acted play I have seen, having seen many in Stratford Manchester and many other places. Jack Bannell gave an engaging and charismatic performance and I feel honoured to have seen it. Many thanks for a wonderful memorable evening x

  • Adele

    Just seen this play at Venue Cymru Llandudno- absolutely amazing. From start to finish it grips you completely. The cast were world class too. Best play I have seen in years

  • Lucy

    I did really enjoy the jekyll and hyde production.
    At the moment I am studying the book in my English lessons.
    I do think watching it benefited me…weldone

  • Kerie

    Fantastic, really enjoyed Jekyl and Hyde. Super performance by all. Spellbinding xx

  • Dorothy Sadowski

    We have just watched your play at Halifax Square Chapel. A brilliant, thought provoking piece of acting. Your Jekyll and Hyde character was electric. So much energy from all four actors. You have all raised my enthusiasm for the theatre.

  • Rachael

    Unbelievable! Your performance tonight in Poole was mesmerising. You are most definitely a star in the making. Yourself and the other cast were totally believable and have more talent in your big toe than some of the major Hollywood stars. You will be closely watched.

  • Adam

    Thoroughly brilliant performance at Loughborough tonight. I was absolutely gripped from the first to the last by this, completely drawn in to the scene as though it were really going on in front of me. Could not recommend more.

  • Olivia hull

    Came to the Loughborough performance of Jekyll and Hyde. Absolutely fantastic! The chemistry between the actors was instantly visible and the passion and sheer electricity of Mr Bannell’s performance as Jekyll and Hyde was thrilling. Will look out for future productions from this team of actors 🙂