Penelope Keith stars in a new production of JB Priestley's 1937 portrait of a family in decline, which launches a three-and-a-half month tour next week. Time and the Conways opens at Coventry's Belgrade Theatre on 11 November 2003, before continuing until late February 2004 to six further venues, with others to be confirmed.

In Time and the Conways, the Conway family celebrate their 1919 reunion at the end of the Great War with hope and optimism, but a fast-forward to 1938 finds bitterness and blight have befallen the children.

Well known for her classic TV sitcom roles in The Good Life and To the Manor Born, Keith, who plays matriarch Mrs Conway, is an accomplished stage actress whose many recent credits include On Approval, Relatively Speaking, How the Other Half Loves, Glyn and It, Mrs Warren's Profession and Good Grief. She was last seen in the West End in the 2001 revival of Noel Coward's Star Quality.

Keith is joined in the Time and the Conways cast by Jamie Chapman (as Alan Conway), Naomi Benson (Madge Conway), Tam Williams (Robin Conway), Kirsten Parker (Hazel Conway), Hannah Young (Kay Conway), Eilidh Macdonald (Carol Conway), Martin Parr (Gerald Thornton), Sean McKenzie (Ernest Beevers) and Sarah Hadland (Joan Helford.

The new production is directed by Richard Baron and designed by Ken Harrison, with lighting by Nick Richings, sound by Phil Hurley and music compositions by Jon Beales. It's presented on tour by Theatre Royal Bath Productions.

Following Coventry, Time and the Conways is currently scheduled to visit Bath, Guildford, Malvern, Richmond, Brighton, Newcastle and Edinburgh.

- by Terri Paddock