Smith will bow in Dubuque in early March at the Theatre Royal Haymarket. The production will be directed by Anthony Page, co-star Catherine McCormack, and feature design by Hildegard Bechtler (sets and costumes) and Howard Harrison. Additional casting will be announced at a later date. The play had a very short-lived run on Broadway in 1980 with Irene Worth in the lead.
Smith has appeared on Broadway three times, winning the Tony Award for Lettice and Lovage and nominations for Private Lives and Night and Day. She won two Academy Awards, for The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and California Suite, as well as the Emmy Award and numerous British acting honors for her work.
Sher will play Edmund Kean, considered the greatest romantic actor of the 19th century, in Sartre's play in a new translation by Frank Hauser. The show will be directed by Adrian Noble, with design by Mark Thompson (sets and costumes) and Peter Mumford (lighting). Joanne Pearce will play the Countess de Koefeld, with additional casting to be announced at a later date.
The show will open at a yet-to-be-named West End Theatre in early May. Prior to that booking, it will play the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre Guildford (March 29-April 7), the Theatre Royal Bath (April 10-14), the Festival Theatre Malvern (April 17-21), and the Theatre Royal Brighton (April 24-28).
Sher has appeared twice on Broadway, in 1997's Stanley, which earned him a Theater World Award and Tony Award nomination, and 2005's Primo, which earned him the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance.