Peter Hall's centennial production of George Bernard Shaw's Mrs Warren's Profession embarks on a three-month tour in May, with an all-new cast led by Twiggy Lawson in the title role previously played by Brenda Blethyn in the West End (See The Goss, 1 Apr 2003). The tour opens at Oxford Playhouse on 5 May 2003 before continuing until 26 July to 11 further venues.

Though Twiggy is best known as a model and "face of the 1960s", she has appeared on stage several times over the years, notably in the 1983 Broadway premiere of Gershwin musical My One and Only. Last year, she starred in a New York production of Noel Coward comedy, Blithe Spirit, a comedy which she's also played in this country at Chichester. Her screen credits include The Boyfriend, The Blues Brothers, Pygmalion and Madame Sousatska.

Written in 1894 but not performed until 1902, Mrs Warren's Profession is considered one of Shaw's most provocative plays, banned for many years. In it, serious-minded Cambridge graduate Vivie Warren discovers how her mother turned to prostitution to fund their family's comfortable lifestyle. Mrs Warren's continued involvement in the world's oldest profession sets the pair at odds.

Hall's production - nominated for a Theatregoers' Choice Award for Best Play Revival - finished its three-month season at the West End's Strand Theatre in January 2003. In addition to Blethyn, it also starred the director's daughter Rebecca Hall, who will be replaced on the road by Hannah Yelland (daughter of actor David Yelland and star of the recent West End revival of Daisy Pulls It Off).

The touring cast of Mrs Warren's Profession also features Jeremy Clyde (as George Crofts), Benedick Blythe (Praed), Mike Burnside (Rev Samuel Gardner) and Ryan Kiggell (Frank). The production is designed by John Gunter, with lighting by Peter Mumford, and presented by Stanhope Productions.

Following Oxford, the tour will continue to Cambridge, Poole, Malvern, Bath, Stoke-on-Trent, Richmond, Newcastle, Brighton and Milton Keynes with further dates to be confirmed.

- by Terri Paddock