Full casting was announced today for the major new production of Still Alice, the stage adaptation of best-selling novel by Lisa Genova, adapted by Christine Mary Dunford. This West Yorkshire Playhouse production in association with Michael Park for The Infinite Group is directed by David Grindley (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Gate Theatre, Dublin), and explores the effects of early-onset dementia on identity, family and relationships, in an uncompromising yet tender portrayal. Still Alice opens West Yorkshire Playhouse’s Every Third Minute festival, a pioneering festival of theatre, dementia and hope that is the first of its kind.
Sharon Small, most recently featuring in the BBC’s Trust Me and Channel 4’s Born to Kill and well known for the BBC’s The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, takes the role of Alice, joined by Ruth Gemmell (Silent Witness, BBC; Penny Dreadful, Sky Atlantic) in the role of Herself, Alice’s inner thoughts.
Dominic Mafham (The Merchant of Venice, Shakespeare’s Globe / World Tour; W1A / BBC) takes the role of Alice’s husband John, Andrew Rothney (Grain in the Blood, Traverse Theatre) joins the cast as Alice’s son Thomas, with Alaïs Lawson (Journey’s End, Fluidity Films) as Alice’s daughter Lydia.
Clara Indrani (Marcella, ITV) also joins the cast as Tamara and Micah Balfour (Emmerdale, ITV) features as Dr Davis.
Still Alice sees driven professional Alice Howland, a university professor at the top of her game, diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 50. Compelled to confront her new reality, she draws on her resilience to remain independent, fighting to maintain her identity as her world changes.
Director David Grindley said ‘I’m delighted to be working with such an incredibly talented cast and creative team on such a brilliant project at West Yorkshire Playhouse, and I’m looking forward to sharing such an affecting story with Leeds audiences. This production has a very rich context, rooted in the Playhouse’s pioneering work with people living with dementia, marking a key moment as part of the Every Third Minute festival.’
Consultant living with dementia Wendy Mitchell joins the creative team, working with the cast offering an insight into living with the condition. Designer Jonathon Fensom (Farinelli and the King, Shakespeare’s Globe / Sonia Friedman Productions) and Lighting Designer Jason Taylor (Rita, Sue and Bob Too, Out of Joint) join the creative team, alongside award winning Gregory Clarke (Albion, Almeidia) as Sound Designer and Composer, and Francesca Jaynes (Through the Looking Glass, Walt Disney Pictures) as Movement Director.