Angela Lansbury is taking her Tony-winning performance in Noël Coward’s Blithe Spirit on the road. The actress will be playing the medium Madame Arcati in a North American tour of the play, which will kick off in December at Los Angeles’ Ahmanson Theatre. The run will close in March at D.C.’s National Theatre, a place of historical significance for Lansbury, since it marked the site of the 1957 pre-Broadway tryout for her Broadway debut, Hotel Paradiso. Lansbury won one of her five Tonys for her work as Arcati in 2009, and returned to the role earlier this year for a production on London’s West End. Michael Blakemore, who directed both productions, will helm the tour as well, and Lansbury will be joined by some of her previous cast mates, including Downton Abbey’s Charles Edwards, who appeared with Lansbury in London.
“During the course of my career, I’ve had the good fortune to play many, many unique and wonderful roles in the movies, on stage and television,” Lansbury said in a statement. “And it is a joy to once again step into the role of Madame Arcati, and bring Noël Coward’s classic comedy ‘Blithe Spirit’ to wonderful audiences here in North America who have supported me for over seven decades.”
Coward’s comedy concerns a novelist, Charles, who invites Arcati to perform a séance for research purposes. Arcati accidentally summons the ghost of Charles’ former wife, eager to reclaim him for herself.