Hollywood and Broadway icon Stockard Channing will return to the London stage this summer, to star in a new production of Olivier Award winner Alexi Kaye Campbell’s acclaimed drama Apologia, directed by the multi-award winning Jamie Lloyd.
Opening at the Trafalgar Studios on 29th July, Apologia will see the Tony and Emmy Award winning actor performing in the West End for the first time in over a decade. Channing’s hugely popular film and TV credits include starring roles in The West Wing, The Good Wife, her Oscar® and Golden Globe nominated role in Six Degrees of Separation, and the iconic role of Rizzo in the film Grease. An acclaimed Broadway and West End star, Channing’s most recent performances on Broadway, It’s Only a Play and Other Desert Cities (a “peerless” performance – NY Times, for which she was nominated for her seventh Tony Award), have affirmed her position as a true theatrical legend.
Channing says: “I’m excited to be returning to the West End – my first time both working with Jamie Lloyd and performing at the Trafalgar Studios. I was so drawn to this unforgettably bold and uncompromising character in such a rich, moving and witty play. I can’t wait for us to bring Apologia to life for the audiences.”
This production also marks the return to the Trafalgar Studios of Jamie Lloyd, following his critically acclaimed productions of The Ruling Class and Macbeth starring James McAvoy and his hit production with Martin Freeman of Richard III.
Alexi Kaye Campbell’s play is a compelling drama about the importance of family and the pressures commitment and principles exert on it. Apologia follows his critical success with The Pride and his acclaimed plays Sunset at The Villa Thalia at the National Theatre and The Faith Machine at the Royal Court Theatre.
Stockard Channing plays Kristin Miller, a firebrand liberal matriarch of a dynamic family, who is presiding over her birthday celebrations. An eminent art historian, Kristin’s almost evangelical dedication to her career and her political activism has resulted in her sons – Peter, a merchant banker, and Simon, a writer – harbouring deeply rooted and barely suppressed resentments towards her. The fissures in her relationship with them are brought to the fore by the recent publication of her memoir.
As the evening progresses through barbed humour, Kristin’s family and friends, and ultimately Kristin herself, question their achievements and choices, and whether they were worth the sacrifices they made. In the increasingly fragmented political turmoil of today’s landscape these questions have never seemed more relevant, and will strike a chord with audiences.
The producers are committed to a number of initiatives during the course of the run to ensure that tickets are accessible to a broad cross-section of theatre-goers as well as aiming to attract new audiences to the West End.
Further casting will be announced shortly.