Olivier winner Andrew Scott (Present Laughter, Hamlet, Fleabag, Sherlock) is back in London's West End, this time in a new solo adaptation of Anton Chekhov's classic play Vanya. The production officially opened at the Duke of York's Theatre September 21, after beginning previews September 15, and the reviews are rolling in.
Simon Stephens (Sea Wall/A Life, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time) penned the new take, which continues through October 21. Sam Yates is at the helm. The West End bow follows a preview run at the Richmond Theatre August 28-September 2.
Scott takes on every role in Stephens' adaptation of the Chekhov play, about a family beset by secrets, illicit love interests, and deep divides over their burdensome estate. It's a new collaboration for the pair who previously worked together on Sea Wall and Birdland following the short film The Hope Rooms.
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Scott said in an earlier statement, “Heartbreaking, hilarious, sexy, devastating—the genius and extraordinary humanity of Chekhov just knocks me out." It's a sentiment echoed by Stephens who said, "This is work that reminds me again and again that theatre is our greatest art form. The most alive. The funniest. The sexiest. The most heart-breaking. The most human.”
“Chekhov’s play is life-affirming and heart-breaking, and places human behavior under the microscope. Vanya will push this examination to a new level, harnessing the power of the unique connection between actor and audience possible only in the theatre," said Yates. "Andrew’s inexhaustible invention and heart will be central to telling this story, a celebration of the multitudes we contain within ourselves, that we may collectively laugh at our imperfections, despair at our failures, and celebrate our compassion.”
The Wessex Grove, Gavin Kalin Productions, and Kater Gordon production also reunites producers Benjamin Lowy and Emily Vaughan-Barratt from Wessex Grove with Scott as they previously worked with the actor on Sea Wall and Hamlet, respectively.