First look rehearsal images are released today for the world premiere of Lyonesse by Penelope Skinner, directed by Ian Rickson and produced by Sonia Friedman Productions. This searingly funny and passionate new play stars Kristin Scott Thomas and Lily James alongside James Corrigan, Doon Mackichan and Sara Powell. It will run at Harold Pinter Theatre from 17 October – 23 December 2023.
Elaine (Kristin Scott Thomas) a reclusive and talented actress, disappears in mysterious circumstances. 30 years later, she finally feels ready to tell her story – summoning Kate (Lily James), a young film executive, to her remote Cornish home to assist with her glorious comeback.
But who really controls the stories we tell, and how we get to tell them? Will these women own their narrative, or will it be swept away from them at any given moment?
Lyonesse is a powerful story for our times by Penelope Skinner, winner of the George Devine Award for Most Promising Playwright for The Village Bike, and whose other works for stage include Angry Alan, Meek, Linda, The Ruins of Civilisation, Fred’s Diner, Eigengrau and F*cked. For screen she has created and written, along with her sister Ginny Skinner, TV thriller The Following Events Are Based On A Pack Of Lies (Sister/BBC1) currently airing on BBC1. Previously she was a writer on four seasons of Fresh Meat (Channel 4) and wrote the film How I Live Now.
Kristin Scott Thomas and Lily James join forces for the first time on stage for Lyonesse after appearing together in the Oscar and BAFTA winning film Darkest Hour (Working Title Films/Universal) and screen adaptation of Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca (Netflix/Working Title). The play also reunites long-time collaborators Ian Rickson and Kristin Scott Thomas following their work together on The Seagull (Royal Court/ Broadway – for which Kristin Scott Thomas won an Olivier for her performance), Electra (Old Vic) and West End productions of Betrayal and Old Times (all produced by SFP). This will be Ian Rickson’s twelfth collaboration with SFP including celebrated West End productions such as Jerusalem, Rosmersholm, Uncle Vanya, The Children’s Hour and The Birthday Party. Lily James last appeared on stage in the SFP production of All About Eve (West End).
Lyonesse will be designed by Georgia Lowe, with lighting by Jessica Hung Han Yun, music by Stephen Warbeck, sound by Tingying Dong and casting by Amy Ball CDG.