Agatha Christie's Daughter Transfers to TrafalgarDate: 20 November 2009
As previously tipped (See The Goss, 18 Nov 2009), Agatha Christie’s A Daughter's a Daughter, a little known play-turned-novel penned by Christie under the pseudonym Mary Westmacott, will receive its West End premiere next month at Trafalgar Studios 1, where it will run for a limited Christmas season, for 29 performances only from 15 December 2009 to 9 January 2010.
Set in 1940s London, the psychological drama centres on the relationship between widow Ann Prentice and her daughter Sarah. Returning home from the war, Sarah persuades her mother to “live life to the hilt” and ditch her fiance Richard. Meanwhile, Sarah has become involved with cad Lawrence and feels the need to marry him in order to please her mother. Will Ann and Sarah make life decisions based on the other's wishes?
Though Christie originally conceived the story as a play in the 1930s, A Daughter's a Daughter first saw the light of day when published as a novel in 1952. The subsequent stage version has only had one notable outing - at the Theatre Royal Bath in 1954 - and has since all but disappeared.
This is the first full-scale production since that 1954 premiere, and it comes via Theatre Royal Windsor, where it ran for a week earlier this month, care of producer Bill Kenwright and the Agatha Christie Theatre Company, which was set up in 2005 as part of a wider initiative to repopularise Christie for the 21st century (See News, 22 Sep 2005).
Jenny Seagrove and Honeysuckle Weeks star as Ann and Sarah, in a cast that also includes Tracey Childs and Simon Dutton. A Daughter's a Daughter is directed by Roy Marsden and designed by Simon Scullion, with lighting by Mark Howett and sound by Ian Horrocks-Taylor.
Currently at Trafalgar Studios 1, Northern Broadsides’ Lenny Henry-led Othello finishes its limited season on 12 December. In the new year, A Daughter's a Daughter will be followed, from 12 January, by the Liverpool Everyman transfer of Harold Pinter’s The Caretaker starring Jonathan Pryce (See News, 6 Nov 2009).
A Daughter's a Daughter won’t, of course, be the only Agatha Christie offering in the West End. At St Martin’s Theatre, The Mousetrap marks its 57th birthday in the West End next Wednesday 25 November 2009. It remains the world’s longest-running play.