Emma Reeves' stage adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's novel Little Women returns for a third London season this Christmas, playing (for its longest run yet) at Sadler's Wells' Lilian Baylis Theatre from 13 December 2002 to 31 January 2003.

Set in New England, Alcott's book follows the adventures of the March family - romantic Meg, fiery Jo, shy Beth and wilful Amy - four ambitious sisters growing up and falling in love during the American Civil War. Since its publication in 1868, the story of the Little Women has enchanted millions of readers and been frequently filmed. The most recent Hollywood version, released in 1994, starred Susan Sarandon, Winona Ryder and Kirsten Dunst.

Rice's stage version for Novel Theatre Company was first seen at the Edinburgh Festival in 1999. It transferred in April 2001 to the fringe Upstairs at the Gatehouse in Highgate, north London, and was revived for a sell-out, month-long season last Christmas at Hampstead's New End Theatre.

At Sadler's Wells, original cast members Lizzie Conrad, Sarah Edwardson, Diana Eskell, Sarah Grochala, Paul Hampton, Nikki Leigh Scott and Ann Micklethwaite return to the production, which is directed by Andrew Loudon and designed by Rachel Payne, with music by Paul Weir and lighting by Matthew Eagland.

- by Terri Paddock