SIMON LEAVES CASUALTY TO TAKE ON OLIVIER’S KEY ROLE
One of television’s best-loved doctors has marched out of accident and emergency and into a stage play that has become a modern classic.Simon MacCorkindale, whose character Harry Harper left Casualty two episodes ago, takes the leading role of Andrew in Sleuth which comes to the Theatre Royal, Bath, next Monday.
The doctor is given his marching orders by hospital bosses…
There are tears all round this week when A&E stalwart Harry Harper bids farewell to his colleagues. After deciding to leak Ruth’s diary to the press, the senior consultant is forced to leave the ward.
‘Harry believes that Ruth’s diary highlights the pressure doctors are under,’ says Simon MacCorkindale, who’s played the doc for six years. ‘But he put his career on the line and he knows he has to go.’ After an emotional goodbye, he visits his old pal Charlie at a private clinic and asks him to return to Holby.
After six years as consultant Harry Harper, Simon MacCorkindale tells us why he’s after a new challenge
Simon MacCorkindale is very happy with the storyline that sees him leave his role Casualty this week.
There are all kinds of unpleasant ways I could have left,’ he says. ‘I could have been murdered by an ungrateful patient, for instance! So I’m delighted to be leaving with Harry’s dignity intact, via the moral high ground! And I’m glad to be leaving on a story that might make people think.’
Harry Harper works his last Casualty shift this week when he leaves after exposing troubled colleague Ruth’s diary to the press, Simon MacCorkindale, who plays him, is delighted Harry isn’t departing on a stretcher! “Often in these shows, characters get blown up, shot or stabbed to death,” smiles Simon, 56. “Doctors do take great risks, but few get shot or stabbed!”
Holby A&E manager Harry Harper bids farewell to the hospital this week – but the top doctor doesn’t leave his post willingly! Harry put his job on the line recently by choosing to leak the emotional diary of suicidal trainee medic Ruth Winters to the press, and now he must face the consequences…
“Harry feels very strongly that junior doctors are being put under too much pressure,” explains Simon MacCorkindale, who plays the department head. “He thinks Ruth should be used as an example of what can happen when they’re pushed too far, and wants to make everyone aware of the issue. His superiors aren’t happy with his actions, though, and force him to resign.”
Having handed Ruth’s diary to the press, Harry prepares to hang up his stethoscope
This week, as Ruth lies in a coma, the truth behind the juniors doctor’s suicide attempt is all over the papers. By leaking her diary, Harry has plunged Holby City into the media spotlight, forfeiting his future as a senior consultant.
‘Harry feels it’s in the best interest of all young doctors for Ruth’s diary to be printed,’ says actor Simon MacCorkindale. ‘It’ll make the public and the NHS fully aware of all the pressure.’
Consultant Harry Harper was shocked by the breakdown of poor Ruth – who was so overworked she attempted suicide. ‘He decides to publish her diary to heighten awareness of the plight of these doctors says actor Simon MacCorkindale, who this week plays his final scenes as Harry, with the dashing doc in trouble for airing the hospital’s dirty laundry in public.
Casualty favourite Simon MacCorkindale is returning to the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre, appearing alongside ex-Robin Hood star Michael Praed in a new production of Sleuth. We take a look at the ever-popular touring show…
Simon MacCorkindale is back at the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre for the second time in just over a year.
The popular actor, who’s nowadays best recognised for his portrayal of Harry Harper in the BBC TV drama series Casualty, is returning to the Midlands to star as Andrew Wyke in a new touring production of Anthony Shaffer’s Sleuth. He will be joined by another familiar television face – Michael Praed, a onetime Robin Hood and Dynasty star. Sleuth tells the story of Andrew Wyke’s devious attempt to gain revenge on his wife’s lover, Milo Tindle. Wyke cajoles Tindle into burgling his property, promising him the money, but in reality plans to kill the younger man and claim to police that he thought he was a prowler.
001 – From Clare: How have you family (Susan included) influenced your career? Well I think mostly through their absolute continued unquestioning support for whatever I embark upon. Susan particularly is a very good springboard for various choices that I have made so I do share all the choices that I make. I think that my mum and dad particularly, it was about the honesty of what one was trying to do, and the respect for the audience. Very early on my father taught me about respect for the audience. I’m not sure I was ever really gonna go down in a daft way with it but certainly that I think has been a very important part in how I deal with the public. I’m always giving the time for other people even within a busy schedule.
Busy Simon MacCorkindale chats to Viv Hardwick about leaving BBC1 ‘s Casualty, taking on a stage tour and finding time to breed expensive Arabian horses
YES sighs Simon MacCorkindale with mock irony, “I have gone down in history as the man who sacked Charlie Fairhead in Casualty.” The plot of the Christmas episode of the BBC1 drama made the right kind of headlines for the programme as actor Derek Thompson became the last member of the original cast to leave after 21 years.