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Casting announced for The Lady in the Van at Theatre Royal Bath

Sara Kestelman will star as Miss Mary Shepherd

Sara Kestelman as Miss Mary Shepherd

Theatre Royal Bath has announced the full casting for Alan Bennett's The Lady in the Van, directed by Jonathan Church, as part of his inaugural summer season as artistic director.

Olivier Award-winner Sara Kestelman (Filthy Business, Hampstead Theatre) will star as Miss Mary Shepherd and the role of Alan Bennett will be played by both Sam Alexander (Love's Labour's Lost, RSC) and James Northcote (Pride and Prejudice, Sheffield Crucible). William Gaunt (Richard II, Shakespeare's Globe) will appear as Underwood.

They will be joined by Emma Amos, Lia Burge, Paul Hickey, Gabrielle Lloyd, David Shaw Parker, Steve Simmonds and Cat Simmons.

The story is adapted from Bennett's book about Mary Shepherd who, in 1974, moved her van onto Bennet's front lawn and stayed there for 15 years. It was adapted for the screen in 2015, directed by Nicholas Hytner and starring Maggie Smith and Alex Jennings.

The production is designed by Robert Innes Hopkins, with lighting by Tim Mitchell, music by Matthew Scott and sound by Mike Walker.

The remaining productions in Theatre Royal Bath's summer season will be the UK Premiere of Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest, adapted for the stage by Carolyn Burns and Looking at Lucian by Alan Franks from Thursday 3 August.

The Lady in the Van runs at Theatre Royal Bath from 17 August to 2 September.