'I am very happy to make this website, designed by Liz, official.'
ZoŽ Wanamaker CBE
My name's 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.
26 November 2016 01:53
A short film in which ZoŽ shares her insights into the theatre industry is featured on All Creative, a new careers advice website for young people keen to learn from the UK's creative professionals. As well as summarising some of the career opportunities the industry provides, ZoŽ discusses the ups and downs of life as a professional actor.
'It's hard work, and it's finding the work, and it's finding the script that fits you,' she says of the challenges of being a performer. Acting is a vocation, entails a great deal of rejection and isn't always well paid. As a result, ZoŽ emphasises that it's important 'to have another skill, so that when you're not working as an actor, you can support yourself'.
She recalls her father, Sam Wanamaker, giving her the Complete Works of Shakespeare in order to deepen her understanding of theatre. 'It still is an inspiration now; people love it. I love it.'
The video suggests that if you want to succeed as an actor, you need talent, dedication and the willingness to study hard and hone your skills. '[Acting] looks easy,' ZoŽ observes, 'but that's the art of it.'
You may recognise the elegant dress she wears in the video, which was filmed around three years ago. Appropriately enough, it's one of her costumes for a stage role: that of Ranevskaya in the National Theatre's 2011 production of The Cherry Orchard.
All Creative is the brainchild of ad agency executive Paul Brazier. In his words, the website aims 'to help young people understand how to get a creative job'. Other well-known individuals appearing in its videos include architect David Adjaye, animator Nick Park, photographer Rankin and the artist Bob and Roberta Smith.
24 November 2016 18:14
Radio 3's production of Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman, starring ZoŽ and David Suchet, has been shortlisted for Best Adaptation in the BBC Audio Drama Awards 2017. Broadcast to mark Miller's centenary in 2015, the play was adapted and directed by the late Howard Davies, with whom ZoŽ had a long history of collaboration.
Shortly before the production was broadcast, ZoŽ discussed Death of a Salesman in the Radio Times. 'It's such a joy to be working again with David and Howard, both of whom I'm extremely in tune with,' she commented. The trio, who enjoyed tremendous success with 2010's West End staging of another great play by Miller, All My Sons, were described by the magazine as 'the ''dream team''' for his work.
The BBC Audio Drama Awards celebrate 'the cultural significance, range and originality of audio drama', in the BBC's words. The finalists in each category will be announced on 3 January. The winners will then be revealed at the BBC Radio Theatre on 29 January, during a ceremony hosted by Lenny Henry.
17 November 2016 20:21
ZoŽ's husband, Gawn Grainger, will return to the stage next spring for Don Juan in Soho at the Wyndham's Theatre, London. The show, written and directed by Patrick Marber, is described on its official website as a 'savagely funny and filthy' tale about a seducer.
Gawn has been cast as Louis and Adrian Scarborough as Stan. The title role will be performed by David Tennant (who, of course, played the Doctor when ZoŽ so memorably reprised her role as villainous 'last human' Lady Cassandra in Doctor Who's 'New Earth'!).
Don Juan in Soho has been adapted from MoliŤre's tragicomedy, Don Juan, and is set in contemporary London. The production is due to run from 17 March to 10 June 2017. It's considered most suitable for theatregoers aged at least 16, due to the nature of the story.
With such a stellar cast, it's bound to be popular. I'd advise booking early, if possible.
Thanks to Vanessa and Karoline for their help.
15 November 2016 01:22
On Sunday night, ZoŽ and her husband, Gawn Grainger, joined a host of other well-known actors at the London Evening Standard Theatre Awards 2016. They were photographed on the red carpet, as well as at the awards reception, for Getty Images, Zimbio, PopSugar and AceShowbiz. Getty also has a short video of them at the event.
ZoŽ looked stylish in a black tailored jacket, trousers and hat, prompting news website MSN to include her outfit in its selection of the Evening Standard Awards' 'most stand-out looks'.
The prestigious ceremony took place at The Old Vic just a day after Kenneth Branagh's Plays at the Garrick season, in which ZoŽ and her husband both appeared (she in All On Her Own/Harlequinade and he in the season's final show, The Entertainer) drew to a close.
They saw Branagh receive the special Lebedev Award in recognition of his hugely popular season of West End plays. One of the judges, the Evening Standardís chief theatre critic, Henry Hitchings, described Branagh's 'spectacular' project as 'a showcase for legends including Judi Dench, ZoŽ Wanamaker and Derek Jacobi'. Another actor who belongs on that list of greats is Zoe's husband, I'm sure you'll agree.
Other winners at the ceremony, which was co-hosted by Elton John and Evgeny Lebedev and presented by Rob Brydon, included David Attenborough, Glenn Close, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Ralph Fiennes, John Malkovich, Billie Piper and more.
4 November 2016 15:59
ZoŽ's latest TV project has been announced today by the BBC. She'll portray the radical theatre director Joan Littlewood in Babs, a special 90-minute drama about the life of national treasure Barbara Windsor, known to many as the star of EastEnders and Carry On films.
Scripted by EastEnders' former lead writer, Tony Jordan, Babs is set in the 1990s. The show finds Windsor reflecting on her life and work as she prepares to make one of her many stage appearances. According to the BBC Media Centre, the insightful biopic 'takes us on a journey of all the people and events that have shaped her career: her lonely childhood and complicated relationship with her father, her doomed marriage to Ronnie Knight, capturing the attention of Joan Littlewood and becoming the blonde bombshell in the Carry On films.'
As a young actress, Windsor joined Littlewood's Theatre Workshop, a London group that trained many performers during the 1950s and 60s at the Theatre Royal, Stratford East. Littlewood was a talented but challenging figure in the theatre industry, known for breaking rules and subverting expectations, with the result that she and the future star didn't always see eye to eye. However, Windsor made a big impression on her and has called her 'a great, great, great director'.
Jaime Winstone and Samantha Spiro will play Windsor at different stages of her life. Other cast members include Leanne Best and Nick Moran as the actress' parents. Today's casting news has been reported by the Radio Times, Digital Spy, AOL and other news sources.
Filming for Babs is currently taking place in South London, which means that ZoŽ is working on the show alongside the previously announced historical drama Britannia.
Babs is being produced by BBC Studios in association with Red Planet Pictures and will be shown next year on BBC One, in anticipation of Windsor's 80th birthday.