Theatre News

Lia Williams to star in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie adaptation at the Donmar Warehouse

Polly Findlay directs the production based on Muriel Spark’s novel

Angus Wright, Lia Williams and Rona Morison
Angus Wright, Lia Williams and Rona Morison
© Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

A new adaptation of Muriel Spark's iconic novel The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie will open at the Donmar Warehouse this summer.

Adapted by Scottish playwright David Harrower (Knives in Hens, Ciara), the new version will star Lia Williams (currently onstage in the West End run of Mary Stuart) as Jean Brodie, alongside a cast including Nicola Coughlan (Jess and Joe Forever), Emma Hindle (making her stage debut), Rona Morison (Ready Player One), Grace Saif (Mary Stuart), Sylvestra Le Touzel (Les Parents Terribles), Helena Wilson (The Lady from the Sea), Angus Wright (Hamlet) and Kit Young (Julius Caesar).

The piece follows the titular school teacher who presides over a chosen group of pupils at Marcia Blaine School for Girls. Originally running in the New Yorker magazine, Spark's complete book was first published in 1961, before being adapted for the stage in 1966 with Vanessa Redgrave in the lead role. In 1969 a film version, starring Maggie Smith, was released.

The venue's artistic director Josie Rourke said: "In the centenary year of her birth, Muriel Spark’s iconic novel has
been adapted for the Donmar by leading playwright, David Harrower. It’s wonderful to have these two
major Scottish voices join in concert on the Donmar stage."

Polly Findlay (Beginning), who returns to the venue following Limehouse starring Roger Allam, will direct the production, which has design by Lizzie Clachan, lighting design by Charles Balfour, sound design by Paul Arditti, composition by Marc Tritschler and movement direction by Naomi Said.

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie runs at the Donmar Warehouse from 12 June to 28 July with previews from 4 June.