Shared Experience steps into the modern world for the first time next month, with its first original play in a contemporary setting. Dealing with adoption and “affluenza” in 21st-century Britain, Mine, the latest play written and directed by Shared Experience joint artistic director Polly Teale, opens at Warwick Arts Centre on 2 October 2008 at the start of a six-date tour, which includes a limited London season from 9 to 25 October 2008 (previews from 7 October) at Hampstead Theatre (See News, 26 Jun 2008).

A wealthy couple have a beautiful home and a glamorous life – they have everything they could wish for, except the one thing they want most of all. A baby. When they decide to adopt, their lives become entangled with the baby’s troubled mother in a way no one could have imagined.

Teale won the 2003 Evening Standard Award for Best Director for her own play After Mrs Rochester, based on the life of Wide Sargasso Sea author Jean Rhys, which transferred to the West End. Her other Shared Experience directing credits include last year’s revival of the company’s two-part adaptation of Tolstoy’s War and Peace, which also had a run at Hampstead Theatre.

The cast of Mine are Marion Bailey, Clare Lawrence Moody, Alistair Petrie, Lorraine Stanley, Katy Stephens and Sophie Stone. The production is designed by Angela Simpson, with lighting by Colin Grenfell, sound by Peter Salem, movement by Liz Ranken and video by Thomas Gray. Following Warwick and Hampstead, Mine visits Cardiff, Chichester, Southampton and Leeds, where the tour concludes, at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, on 22 November 2008.

Shared Experience is renowned for its innovative theatre work, in particular its style of embracing new writing (often using devised scripts) and new literary adaptations, then combining these with physical theatre. In addition to War and Peace, the company’s lauded adaptations have included Jane Eyre, A Passage to India, The Magic Toyshop, Anna Karenina and Mill on the Floss, several of which have also transferred to the West End.

- by Terri Paddock