Ian McKellen & Frances de la Tour to Headline London Dance of Death

News   Ian McKellen & Frances de la Tour to Headline London Dance of Death A West End production of Dance of Death — a surprise hit of the 2001-02 Broadway season — is currently being planned for March 2003, Variety reports.

A West End production of Dance of Death — a surprise hit of the 2001-02 Broadway season — is currently being planned for March 2003, Variety reports.

The Broadway production, an adaptation of an August Strindberg script reinvented by Richard Greenberg, starred Ian McKellen, Helen Mirren, David Strathairn, Anne Pitoniak, Keira Naughton and Eric Martin Brown and featured direction by Sean Mathias. The London mounting of the Strindberg play will also boast McKellen under the direction of Mathias; the acclaimed actor's co stars will include Frances de la Tour, who starred in Mathias' National Theatre production of Les Parents Terribles; and A Doll's House Tony winner Owen Teale.

Reached at his home in Cape Town, South Africa, Mathias told the industry paper, "The [London] casting gives [the play] quite a different dynamic. I always thought Ian and Frances would make an amazing pair, and I waited patiently all year to get them."

The play's London production is tentatively scheduled for March 4 , 2003, at the Lyric Theatre; it played a much larger house in New York, the Broadhurst, currently the home of the Into the Woods revival.

Dance of Death was written by the Swedish dramatist in 1901 and belongs to Strindberg's later, expressionistic phase, a period which produced such classic works as The Ghost Sonata and The Dream Play. American playwright Richard Greenberg penned the new "adaptation" of it for Broadway. Greenberg's credits include Three Days of Rain, Take Me Out, Eastern Standard and The Dazzle, among other plays. McKellen and de la Tour play Edgar and Alice, husband and wife for 25 years, who dwell in a home they have dubbed "Little Hell." As they prepare for their silver anniversary, a figure from their past enters the scene.