Lisa Dillon will join Stephen Mangan in Joe Penhall’s new play Birthday at the Royal Court Theatre from 28 June to 4 August 2012 (previews from 22 June), it was announced today.

The pair will play a couple in the tense, final hours before the arrival of their new baby.

Lisa Dillon's recent credits include The Taming of the Shrew at the RSC and Knot of the Heart at the Almeida. She is well known to Cranford fans as Miss Mary Smith in the BBC TV series.

Stephen Mangan last appeared at the Royal Court in The People are Friendly by Michael Wynne. His previous stage credits include The Norman Conquests at the Old Vic and on Broadway

Joe Penhall's plays include Haunted Child and Dumb Show at the Royal Court and Blue/Orange at the National Theatre which transferred to the West End and for which he received an Olivier Award.

The production will be directed by Roger Michell, designed by Mark Thompson, with lighting by Hugh Vanstone and sound by John Leonard.