With Girl on an Altar by Marina Carr running and Zodwa Nyoni’s The Darkest Part of the Night in rehearsals, Kiln Theatre Artistic Director Indhu Rubasingham today announces the return of Zadie Smith’s The Wife of Willesden to the venue, running from 14 December to 28 January, ahead of transferring to the US, where it will play at the American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) at Harvard University from 25 February – 19 March.
Clare Perkins will reprise her role as Alvita, in Rubasingham’s critically acclaimed production.
Also announced today, Zadie Smith will become a Trustee of Kiln Theatre, joining the company’s Board with immediate effect.
Indhu Rubasingham said today, “It’s such a pleasure to be able to bring back our hit production of The Wife of Willesden. Last year’s run was not only the fastest selling show in the venue’s history, but was a reminder of the joy of creating and experiencing theatre together not long after lockdown. To have another opportunity to share it with more audiences is a real treat. It is a wonderful collaboration of many brilliant people, especially Zadie, who we are thrilled to announce today will also join the theatre as a Trustee.
“We are delighted to have been invited by Diane Paulus (A.R.T. Terrie and Bradley Bloom Artistic Director) to bring The Wife of Willesden to the US as part of the American Repertory Theater’s fabulous 2022/23 programming; and hope to share further plans for the production in due course.”
A proper local legend. Married five times. Mother. Lover. Aunt. Friend. Alvita will tell her life story to anyone in the pub – there’s no shame in her game. The question is: are you ready to hear it? Because this woman’s got the gift of the gab: she can rewrite mistakes into triumphs, turn pain into parables, and her love life’s an epic poem. They call her The Wife of Willesden…
A play that celebrates the human knack for telling elaborate tales, especially about our own lives.
Critically acclaimed, multi-award winning, best-selling author Zadie Smith makes her playwriting debut, transporting Chaucer’s The Wife of Bath to 21st Century North West London.
Director Indhu Rubasingham invites you to take your seat at the bar, order a pint or two, and listen to this bawdy, beautiful new comedy up close, and very, very personal.
The Kiln Theatre auditorium will be transformed into a local London pub, complete with pub tables in the stalls.
The Wife of Willesden was originally produced in 2021 by Kiln Theatre in association with Brent2020, London Borough of Culture.