Jennifer Saunders takes her happy medium to the West End | ...plus regional dates for her Blithe Spirit revival © Nobby Clark

Jennifer Saunders takes her happy medium to the West End

...plus regional dates for her Blithe Spirit revival

The new version of Noel Coward’s Blithe Spirit starring Jennifer Saunders as a bonkers clairvoyant is to hit the West End.

Directed by former National Theatre boss Sir Richard Eyre, the production ran at the Theatre Royal Bath in June, winning plaudits for its star.

Her character of Madame Arcati – originally made famous by Margaret Rutherford in the West End and in the 1945 David Lean film version – stages a seance at a novelist’s home and inadvertently conjures up the ghost of his first wife.

Dominic Cavendish in The Daily Telegraph raved that in the role of Madame Arcati, Saunders’ fully physicalised, funny bones to the fore, harnessing everything we love about her but entering another dimension of expressiveness’.

In The Times, Sam Marlow said: ‘Saunders is killingly funny as the meddling medium’, and writing in the Daily Mail, Patrick Marmion said: ‘It’s as though Ab Fab’s Eddie has body-snatched Miss Marple and fitted her with a rogue eye for a cucumber sandwich.’

Blithe Spirit will play at a number of UK theatre before its six-week run at the Duke of York's Theatre from March 5.

Blithe Spirit Saunders

It will kick off at the Theatre Royal, Brighton from January 22, then vists Malvern, Bath again, then Cambridge, Richmond and Norwich.

A movie version of Blithe Spirit is also in the pipeline with Judi Dench as Madame Arcati alongside Dan Stevens and Isla Fisher.

Meanwhile,  Saunders is to become a team captain in the second series of Alan Carr’s Sky One panel show, There’s Something About Movies. 

Tickets to the West End performances are available here.

Published: 20 Sep 2019

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