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Little Women comes to the West End



Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

EMMA Reeve's stage adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's evergreen novel, Little Women, will open at the West End's Duchess Theatre on October 13, 2004, with previews from September 27.

A semi-autobiography, Little Women was first published as long ago as 1868. Set in New England, it follows the fortunes of the March family, in particular, of romantic Meg, fiery Jo, shy Beth and wilful Amy - the sisters destined to fall in love during the American Civil War.

The stage version is the latest in a string of adaptations that include both radio and television productions, as well as, in 1994, a Hollywood, big screen version that starred Susan Sarandon, Winona Ryder and Kirsten Dunst.

And a measure of its popularity, Little Women appeared alongside such classics as War and Peace and The Lord of the Rings in BBC TV's Big Read Top Ten.

Reeve's stage version was first seen at the 1999 Edinburgh Festival, followed, in April 2001, by performances at north London's Gatehouse Theatre.

Next, and in the same year, came a sell-out Christmas season at Hampstead's New End Theatre, and finally, in 2002, it was reprised at the Lilian Baylis Theatre, Sadler's Wells.

Returning to the cast as Jo, Meg and Amy, will be Sarah Grochala, Sarah Edwardson and Diana Eskell, although the part of Beth will be played by newcomer, Phoebe Thomas.

Also returning, will be Lizzie Conrad as Mrs March, Ann Micklethwaite as Sallie Gardiner, Paul Hampton as Laurie and Tim Fessler as John Brooke.

Little Women will be directed by Andrew Loudon and is currently booking until January 15, 2005.

 

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