The new production will feature as part of the Trafalgar Transformed Season and plays its first performance at the venue on 20th February 2016. Press night is on 25th February, 2016 with a gala night to be held on 29th February, 2016. Joining Aduba in the cast will be Zawe Ashton and Laura Carmichael.
In a luxurious bedroom, two maids fantasize about killing their employer, playing out dangerous and sadistic scenarios as they plan her violent death. An intense psychological thriller seething with unique theatricality and brimming with intrigue, The Maids is a vicious analysis of the class system, and a provocative exploration of sexuality.”
The play was written by French playwright Jean Genet and inspired by the real-life murders committed by the Papin sisters. It premiered in Paris in 1947 and made its first appearance in the UK at the Mercury Theatre, London in 1952, before transferring to the Royal Court Theatre. The first English-spoken production of the play was performed in the UK in 1956. Numerous productions have been staged in the UK since then and it has also been performed in countries all around the world, most recently seen in the US last year when the Sydney Theatre Company’s adaption transferred to New York.
The Maids returns to London for the first time in over 20 years and opens at Trafalgar Studios in a new version by Benedict Andrews and Andrew Upton, directed by Jamie Lloyd. It also features design by Soutra Gilmour.
Uzo Aduba is an American actress best known for her role as Suzanne ‘Crazy Eyes’ Warren on the Netflix TV series Orange Is the New Black, for which she won two Emmy Awards. Her Broadway credits include Coram Boy and Godspell, in addition to an Off-Broadway production of Venice. The Maids marks her London stage debut.
Zawe Ashton’s stage credits include Fresh Meat and Not Safe For Work, and she was most recently seen in at the Donmar Warehouse in their production of Splendour.
Laura Carmichael is most recognisable for her role in popular ITV period drama Downton Abbey, in which she plays Lady Edith. She made her West End debut in the 2012 revival of Uncle Vanya at the Vaudeville Theatre.
Speaking about her involvement in the play, Uzo Aduba said: “I wanted to be a part of The Jamie Lloyd Company because they’re interested in doing exciting work. Jamie reinvents classic plays in a way that we’ve never seen before or have explored before… To be part of a play that allows for three women to mine such complex characters inside of an already rich and thrilling story, is the stuff that acting dreams are made on.”
The Maids will run at Trafalgar Studios from 20th February – 21st May 2016.