The Pillowman with Lily Allen and Steve Pemberton – exclusive first look at rehearsals

The West End production of Martin McDonagh’s thriller opens in the West End later this month

Lily Allen
Lily Allen in rehearsals, photo by Helen Murray

Exclusive: Rehearsal images have been released for the eagerly anticipated West End revival of The Pillowman.

The Pillowman, which won the Olivier Award for Best New Play in 2004, tells the story of a writer, Katurian, who is interrogated by police about the content of her short stories, which bear similarities to a spate of local murders.

Appearing are WhatsOnStage Award-winner Lily Allen, who will take on the role of Katurian (marking the first time the role has been played by a woman) and Steve Pemberton as Tupolski. Also in the cast are Paul Kaye (Ariel) and Matthew Tennyson (Michal).

The company is completed by Rebecca Lee (Mother and understudy Katurian), Daniel Millar (Father and understudy Ariel and Tupolski) Carlotta Di Gregori (understudy Mother) and David Angland (Blind Man and understudy Michal and Father). The role of Child 1 is shared by Ruby Siddle, MadelynneMills and Sophia Cullingford, and the role of Child 2 is shared by Lexi Anna Scott, Darcy Crosbyand Lillie Stocker.

Kaye is best known for his extensive work on television, including appearances on Game of Thrones, Afterlife, and The Third Day. On stage, he originated the role of Mr Wormwood in Matilda The Musical for the RSC, earning an Olivier nomination for his performance. Tennyson, on the other hand, has film credits including Benediction and Pride, and his stage work includes A Monster Calls at the Old Vic and Cleansed for the National Theatre.

The Pillowman’s West End premiere will be directed by Matthew Dunster. Anna Fleischle is responsible for the set and costume design, Neil Austin for the lighting design, Ian Dickinson for Autograph for sound design, and Amy Ball for the casting. Also on the creative team are video designer Dick Straker, fight director RC Annie, movement director Chi-San Howard, associate director Isabel Marr and associate designer Liam Bunster.

McDonagh is one of the most celebrated contemporary playwrights, with other works including The Beauty Queen of Leenane, The Banshees of Inisherin and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

The production will run at London’s Duke of York’s Theatre from 12 June to 2 September with a press night scheduled for 21 June. Pemberton and Allen are also set to appear on The One Show this evening.

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The Pillowman

Closed: 02 September 2023