Helen Mirren is set to reprise her career-defining role as ‘The Queen’ for a new stage-play directed by Stephen Daldry. The British star – who scooped an Oscar for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II in Stephen Frear’s 2006 movie – will team up with Peter Morgan for ‘The Audience’, a production exploring six decades of the monarch’s weekly meetings with British prime ministers.
Her portrayal of The Queen in a meeting with Tony Blair – played by Martin Sheen – was considered one of the more memorable scenes of the award-winning movie and Daldry is set to build on that in the stage-play. Playing the monarch from her twenties to her eighties will be no mean feat, though Mirren holds the necessary credentials to take on such a role. According to the Guardian, she said, “Her voice has changed, and I can use that –she had a terribly posh voice when she was young…But now even the Queen, while she isn't quite dropping the ends of her lines –though her grandsons do! – there's a tiny bit of estuary creeping in there. I can use all that to signify the age range, and we'll come up with other things.” The drama will be staged at the Gielgud Theatre in London from March 2013.
‘The Audience’ is certainly in good hands; playwright Peter Morgan’s last play ‘Frost/Nixon’ gained universal critical acclaim and featured a standout performance from Michael Sheen.