Big fan of Normal People (who isn’t at this point)? Its breakout star Paul Mescal is set to appear in the West End later this year, giving you a chance to see his acting chops live on stage. He’ll be starring in a new limited run of Tennessee Williams’ seminal play A Streetcar Named Desire, from December 2022 to February 2023.
The Irish heartthrob will be transforming himself into the role of Stanley, perhaps the most iconic character from the play, which might come as a shock to Normal People fans used to the more shy and vulnerable Connell.
Stanley was famously played by Marlon Brando during the play’s very first run in 1947, becoming an iconic performance. Brando also reprised the role in the film adaptation several years later. In the play, Stanley is the husband of Stella DuBois, the sister of Blanche DuBois who comes to stay with the couple in New Orleans. Stella has strong passionate feelings for Stanley, despite his controlling and abusive behaviour toward her.
The play... ...has become a window into life in 1940s America...
As tensions between the three rise, the play gives a fascinating but in some ways bleak insight into relationships and marriage, and with time has become a window into life in 1940s America. This new version of the play is directed by Rebecca Frecknall, who’s directed several well known plays in London including the Eddie Redmayne starring Cabaret. Meanwhile, joining Mescal in the cast are Lydia Wilson- who was previously in Frecnkall’s production of the Duchess of Malfi- as Blanche and Anjana Vasan (We Are Lady Parts, Killing Eve) as Stella.
This isn’t Mescal’s first play in the city (he was in a production of The Plough and the Stars), but it is his first major leading role on stage in London. The new production will open on 10th December, and run until 4th February next year. You can purchase tickets for it (they go on sale on 6th September), and the rest of the Almeida’s current season, on the theatre’s website.