'I am very happy to make this website, designed by Liz, official.'
ZoŽ Wanamaker CBE
My name is Liz, and I manage the website. For details of when and why it was created, please see the section about this website.
ZoŽ has an official Twitter account, @ZoeWanamaker, that she runs with her PA, Vanessa. I tweet at @LizLockhart1985.
Sam Wanamaker Playhouse:
You can donate to the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, and find out more about this recreation of an indoor Jacobean theatre, on the Shakespeare's Globe website. ZoŽ, who is Honorary President of the Globe, talks about the history and significance of the project in a video by the theatre.
Guestbook - To sign the guestbook, please click the picture below. Your comments are much appreciated.
23 March 2015 23:11
ZoŽ is the presenter of a new short film, which was recorded in December, about the work of The Esther Benjamins Trust in Nepal. The film, set at a London primary school, contrasts the experiences of children in the UK with their poorer counterparts in Nepal.
As ZoŽ explains during the film, in Nepal 'desperately poor parents sell their children on the promise of a dream of a better life'. However, that dream is not realised; instead the children are trafficked into India, where they face lives of 'virtual slavery'.
The film makes clear that The Esther Benjamins Trust's work in Nepali communities is crucial. The charity works to rescue and support Nepali children who are victims of trafficking, as well as aiming to prevent further instances of trafficking. Moreover, it helps to improve schools, etc. in the region to secure children's futures.
'One of the most effective ways to stop [the children] being trafficked again Ė and to save their younger sisters and brothers from the same fate,' Zoe emphasises, 'is to keep them safe in school'.
You can find out more about The Esther Benjamins Trust, sponsor a child or make a donation to the charity by visiting its website.
13 March 2015 17:26
Stevie is nearing the end of its first full week at Hampstead Theatre, which has published a great series of production photos of ZoŽ as poet Stevie Smith. Also pictured are her co-stars, Lynda Baron (who plays Stevie's aunt) and Chris Larkin (as the enigmatic 'Man').
Previews of Stevie began on 6 March, and there are already many very enthusiastic comments about the show on Twitter from theatregoers (I'm endeavouring to re-tweet them). This funny, poignant play's press night will take place on Monday. Its run continues until 18 April.
Tickets are on sale - many dates now have only limited availability, and so I'd suggest booking sooner rather than later!
7 March 2015 19:20
In a fascinating interview published today by the Telegraph, ZoŽ reveals what draws her to take risks and embrace the unexpected in her career. 'If it's frightening, if it scares you, it's tempting,' she emphasises. 'I have always chosen things that have not been...a given.'
This is absolutely true of her current project, reprising the role of mid-twentieth-century poet Stevie Smith at London's Hampstead Theatre (previews began yesterday), following a successful run at Chichester Festival 2014. As the Telegraph remarks, Zoe's performance in Stevie - a play set entirely in the poet's Palmers Green front room - has been 'praised for transforming what could have been a reticent evening into something ferocious and dangerous'. It is fierce, not cosy.
ZoŽ clearly admires Stevie Smith greatly and wants to do justice to her legacy in the play. 'I feel she wants to be remembered. She was such a strong personality, tenacious, full of literature.' As the Telegraph points out, Zoe is continually researching Stevie Smith's life and work, continually learning new things about it.
Incidentally, Hampstead Theatre has a series of helpful resources about Stevie, which are likely to be of interest to any fans going to watch the play. It is being staged until 18 April. Tickets are currently available - and selling quickly!
6 March 2015 14:36
This evening ZoŽ makes her highly anticipated return to Hampstead Theatre, playing the title role in Stevie, twenty-one years after she first performed there, starring in black comedy Dead Funny (which was highlighted by the theatre on Twitter yesterday).
Stevie enjoyed great acclaim when staged as part of Chichester Festival 2014, with the Guardian remarking that 'ZoŽ Wanamaker is so perfectly cast in Hugh Whitemore's play about the life and work of the poet Stevie Smith that you don't feel so much that she's acting as simply channelling the mid-20th century poet and novelist.'
Anyone who watched Stevie at Chichester will know what a wonderful, warm-hearted play it is. Let's wish ZoŽ and everyone else involved with the show great success in its new home at Hampstead.
2 March 2015 18:50
In an insightful interview published today by the Guardian, ZoŽ reflects on playing Palmers Green poet Stevie Smith, who she describes as 'a true original'. Zoe adds, modestly: 'She was much more articulate than I am, much more witty, but she has a self-deprecation that I can relate to. I feel she speaks for me a lot of the time. She wants to be heard, and we all want to be heard.'
With this in mind, ZoŽ aims to ensure that Stevie Smith's beautiful, highly individual poetry is 'heard, really heard' and appreciated by theatregoers at Hugh Whitemore's play, Stevie. Following its acclaimed run as part of Chichester Festival 2014, the production transfers on Friday to London's Hampstead Theatre.
Zoe is clearly very happy to be reprising the role of the quirky poet: Stevie is 'such a joy', she concludes.