Judi Dench in Blithe Spirit

Tea Time Tidbit for the week of June 24, 2019

Tea Time Tidbit

Judi Dench

Dame Judi Dench is back in front of the camera again, this time filming the Noel Coward comedy, Blithe Spirit. In it, Dench stars as Madame Arcati – an eccentric medium who accidentally summons up the dead wife of a best-selling crime writer who is struggling with writer’s block. The role of the writer, Charles Condomine, is played by Downton Abbey’s Dan Stevens.

This is the second time that Dench and Stevens have teamed up for a Noel Coward classic, having appeared on stage together in the 2006 West End hit, Hay Fever. In that particular production, which was directed by the late Sir Peter Hall, Stevens played the son of Dench’s character.

Tea Time Tidbit

Dan Stevens

Blithe Spirit the film is directed by Hall’s son, Edward Hall. It is due to be released next year, which will be the 75th anniversary of the original film version of the play. In that 1945 version, the role of Madame Arcati was played by the inimitable Margaret Rutherford and the role of Charles by Rex Harrison. Those are pretty big shoes to fill, but no doubt Dench and Stevens are up to the task.

Before the release of Blithe Spirit Dench can be seen in the film version of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s long-running musical Cats. Featuring an all star cast which includes Sir Ian McKellen, James Cordon, Idris Elba, Taylor Swift, and Jennifer Hudson, Cats is scheduled to be released in movie theatres on December 20th. Dench plays the wise and beloved elderly cat, Old Deuteronomy.

Dench appears weekday afternoons in As Time Goes By, which airs at 3pm on Afternoon Tea.

To contact Heather:
E-mail: heather@mpt.org
Address: Afternoon Tea
Maryland Public Television
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Owings Mills, MD 21117

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Afternoon Tea is Maryland Public Television's weekday presentation of British programs.
Our host and Tea Lady is Heather Sanderson.
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