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Imelda Staunton, winner of the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical for Gypsy (Photo: Pamela Raith)

Imelda Staunton, winner of the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical for Gypsy (Photo: Pamela Raith)

Imelda Staunton leads Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? revival

First Published 23 September 2016, Last Updated 23 September 2016

Four-time Olivier Award winner Imelda Staunton is to lead a new West End production of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? at the Harold Pinter Theatre.

Theatregoers in the New Year can look forward to seeing Imelda, in her first London stage appearance since her triumphant Olivier Award-winning performance in Gypsy, co-star in the production with Conleth Hill, perhaps best known as Game Of Thrones’ Lord Varys. The show will play at the Harold Pinter Theatre from 22 February 2017 for 13 weeks only.

The announcement comes one week after the sad news of Edward Albee’s passing last week. Having been awarded a special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2005, the revered playwright’s legacy of celebrated shows includes three plays which won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, and two which received the Tony Award for Best Play, including Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?.

Set in the early hours of the morning on the campus of an American college, the play sees Martha (played by Imelda), much to her husband George’s (Conleth) discontent, invite new professor Nick and his wife Honey back to their home for after-party drinks. But George and Martha’s initial hospitality masks a series of toxic games, and with alcohol flowing and dawn approaching, the young couple are drawn in until the evening reaches a moment of devastating truth.

With direction from James Macdonald, who recently directed Escaped Alone at the Royal Court, a star cast and an acclaimed text, theatregoers will be delighted to learn that over 100 tickets for every performance of Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? will be priced at £15, with reduced prices for the show’s preview period.

The production’s run at the Harold Pinter Theatre follows the conclusion of the run of its current occupants, the Olivier Award-winning Kinks musical Sunny Afternoon, and the upcoming West End transfer of Mark Rylance’s and Louis Jenkins’ acclaimed comic new play, Nice Fish.

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