Little Women/World on Fire

Tea Time Tidbit for the week of April 20, 2020

Tea Time Tidbit

Little Women

I hope you managed to catch Little Women when it aired last week. It might be an American classic, but there were an awful lot of British influences in the 2018 Masterpiece production.

It was adapted by Heidi Thomas, whose name you might recognize from the credits of Call the Midwife. Thomas is the Call the Midwife creator, writer and producer. She’s also married to Steven McGann, who plays Dr. Turner in the series, which airs Sunday nights on MPT at 8pm.

The director of Little Women was another Brit, Vanessa Caswill. Angela Lansbury, who was born in London, played Aunt March and this was the very first time in her 80-year-long acting career, that she was directed by a woman. In an interview about her experience working with Caswill, the now 94-year-old Lansbury recalled the relationship.

“It was a very intimate relationship with a director which I had never really encountered before... She was quite wonderful in her ability to come to us actors — not in a loud way, from a distance she would come and whisper in our ears. And in that way, she was able to impart very subtle things that otherwise perhaps as a woman she might not have wanted to, for everybody to hear. But for the actor to hear it was delightful and I loved working that way with her.”

Also appearing in the three one-hour long episodes were British actors Emily Watson, as Marmee, Michael Gambon, as Mr. Laurence, and Jonah Hauer-King, as Laurie Laurence.

Tea Time Tidbit

Jonah Hauer-King in
World on Fire

Hauer-King is also appearing in our current Sunday evening Masterpiece offering, World on Fire. The duel British American citizen was born in London. He was raised Jewish and his maternal grandparents fled Warsaw in the 1930s. After leaving school, Hauer-King started his acting career, while simultaneously first attending Eton College and then Cambridge University. He graduated from Cambridge less than three years ago and obtained a First Class degree in Theology and Religious Studies. That was quite an impressive feat, given that the young actor was also acting on stage and screen at the same time.

World on Fire also stars Helen Hunt, Sean Bean and Lesley Manville. Episode four airs on Masterpiece on Sunday, April 22nd at 9pm, following Call the Midwife which airs at 8pm.

Passport members can stream Little Women at For more information on becoming a Passport member, visit

As you probably know, Afternoon Tea is on hiatus right now, in order to enable MPT – in collaboration with WETA and WHUT - to provide televised educational programming for Maryland students and, in particular, those students who lack home computer access. Thank you for your understanding and support of this decision. We hope to resume our regular programming as soon as possible.

To contact Heather:
Address: Afternoon Tea
Maryland Public Television
11767 Owings Mills Blvd.
Owings Mills, MD 21117