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Olivier Award-winner Alice Krige stars in Ingmar Bergman’s Persona at Riverside Studios

Persona

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

PERSONA, the world premiere of a new theatrical adaptation of Ingmar Bergman’s 1966 iconic Swedish psychological movie – considered by many critics as one of the greatest films ever made – is to be the opening production in Studio 3 of the new Riverside Studios.

Running from January 21 to February 23, 2020, this new adaptation by visionary director Paul Schoolman presents the thoughts of Ingmar Bergman himself, giving a far deeper understanding of the piece than ever before.

Olivier Award winner Alice Krige makes her return to the London stage after two decades working in Hollywood movies and on hit TV shows. The cast also includes South African’s Nobuhle Mngcwengi and Paul Schoolman, who adapted Bergman’s manuscript while working in the film director’s study on the Island of Faro.

Persona centres on a nurse, Sister Alma and her patient, well-known stage actress Elisabet Vogler, who has suddenly stopped speaking. They move to a cottage, where Alma cares for Elisabet, confides in her and begins having trouble distinguishing herself from her patient.

This adaptation creates the character of The Narrator, using Bergman’s voice for the first time.

The production promises to be a sensory feast, with a fourth character ‘played’ by William Close who will play an original score on his incredible Earth Harp, which will turn the theatre itself into a giant instrument. The Earth Harp earned Close a finalist slot on America’s Got Talent and it was recently named by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s longest playable stringed musical instrument.

Persona was the Roman name for the mask worn by an actor to magnify their voice. Once you start to tear away the mask you begin to see reality…

Alice Krige made her acting debut in the film Chariots of Fire and has since starred in Ghost Story with Fred Astaire, Melvyn Douglas and Douglas Fairbanks Jnr; King David opposite Richard Gere; Haunted Summer with Laura Dern; Barfly with Mickey Rourke; See You in the Morning, opposite Jeff Bridges; and with Patrick Stewart in Star Trek: First Contact.

She won the Olivier Award and the Plays and Players Award in London’s West End for Raina in Arms and the Man, the Saturn Best Actress Award for Stephen King’s Sleepwalkers and the Saturn Best Supporting Actress for her performance of the Borg Queen in Star Trek: First Contact, and an Ace Nomination for The Hidden Room.

Persona is directed by Paul Schoolman and designed by BAFTA award-winner Fotini Dimou. Videographer is Filip Haglund.

For more information or to book tickets, call the box office on 020 8237 1010 or visit riversidestudios.co.uk/.