Meera Syal at the 2013 WhatsOnStage Awards
Meera Syal at the 2013 WhatsOnStage Awards
© Dan Wooller

Birmingham Rep has announced that it will premiere the first stage adaptation of Meera Syal's debut novel Anita and Me.

Adapted for the stage by Tanika Gupta and directed by artistic director Roxana Silbert, the show opens in autumn 2015.

Wolverhampton-born Syal's semi-autobiographical novel was first published in 1996 and was subsequently adapted for film. It centres on nine-year-old Meena, growing up in the only Punjabi family in a Black Country mining village.

According to press material, "Syal's novel is a unique vision of a British childhood in the Seventies, a childhood caught between two cultures, each on the brink of change."

Anita and Me was recently added to the new English Literature GCSE syllabus.

Syal said: "I am so thrilled that Anita and Me is being developed and premiered at the Birmingham Rep, in the West Midlands where I grew up, where the novel is set and whose people and stories had such a huge influence on my childhood."

Roxana Silbert added: "Meera's brilliant novel is a wonderful coming of age story. It's an engaging and funny tale set in a tight knit community about a young girl trying to decide her cultural identity and I look forward immensely to realising it on stage."