Alan Ayckbourn to star with his wife in new play written in lockdown

Alan Ayckbourn and his wife Heather Stoney are to star in the World Premiere of his play Anno Domino written in lockdown.

Anno Domino Alan Ayckbourn
Alan Ayckbourn and Heather Stoney

Alan Ayckbourn’s Anno Domino, a play written in lockdown is to have its World Premiere audio broadcast exclusively via the Stephen Joseph Theatre website from 25 May.

Anno Domino will be Ayckbourn’s 84th play and will mark his return to acting some 56 years after his last appearance on a professional stage.

Teaming up with his wife, actress Heather Stoney, the show has been recorded during the lockdown as a result of this year’s season at the Stephen Joseph Theatre being halted due the COVID-19 outbreak. Artistic Director Paul Robinson came up with the idea to create a new play that Ayckbourn and Stoney would record and release online.

In Anna Domino, Ayckbourn and Stoney will play four characters each with an age range of 18 to mid-70’s.

Sir Alan Ayckbourn said: “The inspiration for Anno Domino came from the idea that all relationships ultimately, however resilient they appear to be, are built on sand. And it only takes one couple to break up abruptly to take us all by surprise, then all of a sudden everyone is questioning their own unshakeable relationship.”

The Stephen Joseph Theatre’s artistic director Paul Robinson, said: “We can’t wait for our audiences to hear Anno Domino. We were all hugely disappointed to have to suspend our summer season.

“We were so looking forward to seeing the brilliant Just Between Ourselves – ‘the one with the car on stage’ – and the world premiere of Alan’s up-to-the-minute satire, Truth Will Out.

“Anno Domino is one of Alan’s ‘lighter’ plays, a hopeful and rather joyous piece which will provide perfect entertainment in these troubled times. This is a hugely exciting and very contemporary response to the current situation, and shows yet again how Alan has always moved with the times.”

You can listen to Anno Domino, for free, on the theatre’s website – – from noon on Monday May 25. It will be available until noon on Thursday 25 June.

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