Tony winner and Olivier nominee Sophie Okonedo (A Raisin in the Sun, Antony and Cleopatra) stars in the title role of Robinson Jeffers' adaptation of Euripides' Medea, which begins previews in the West End at @sohoplace February 10.
Directed by Dominic Cooke, the production will officially open February 17 for a limited engagement through April 22. Okonedo is joined on stage by Olivier winner and Tony nominee Ben Daniels (All My Sons, Les Liaisons Dangereuses) as Jason/Creon/Aegeus, with Marion Bailey as Nurse, Penny Layden as 3rd Woman of Corinth, Jo McInnes as 1st Woman of Corinth, and Amy Trigg as 2nd Woman of Corinth with understudies Alicia Charles, Leda Hodgson, and Tom Peters.
Producers are Kate Horton for Fictionhouse Limited, Nica Burns, and Kate Pakenham Productions.
The production reunites director Cooke with Okonedo and Daniels, who have worked on several projects since the 1990s, including BBC’s recent The Hollow Crown—Wars of the Roses.
Okonedo said in an earlier statement, “I am really excited and a touch nervous to be playing Medea. I’m buoyed by the fact I'm working with two of my closest friends and long-term collaborators, Dominic Cooke and Ben Daniels. I was lucky enough to have Nica Burns show me around the new @sohoplace theatre while it was still being built, and I was so impressed by the space that I signed up immediately to perform there!”
Cooke added, “I have been friends with Sophie Okonedo since we were in our teens. We’ve worked together many times including on Arabian Nights at the Young Vic in 1998 and The Hollow Crown: Wars of the Roses for the BBC in 2015. Sophie is one of our most visceral, emotionally connected actors, and I have long thought she’d be a brilliant Medea. I am over the moon that it’s now happening as the second West End production for Fictionhouse, run by Kate Horton and myself. I’m also really looking forward to working again with the super talented Ben Daniels after our hugely fulfilling collaboration on The Normal Heart at the National Theatre. Ben and Sophie have been an explosive onstage partnership in the past, and I can’t wait to see them playing these iconic roles together in Nica Burns’ thrilling new auditorium @sohoplace.”
Medea has designs by Vicki Mortimer, lighting by Neil Austin, and sound by Gareth Fry. The creative team also includes casting directors Amy Ball and Verity Naughton, movement director Lucy Cullingford, associate director Tanuja Amarasuriya, production manager Igor, costume supervisor Helen Johnson, wigs designer Sam Cox, props supervisor Mary Halliday, and vocal/dialect coach Jeannette Nelson
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