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Nov 10, 2017

BTG's Mark Smith speaks to acclaimed director Sally Cookson about her forthcoming production of family classic The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. The show is set to transform the West Yorkshire Playhouse's main theatre, the Quarry, into an in-the-round stage for the first time in the venue's history.

Speaking towards the end of the company's seven-week creative process, Cookson talks about the "dark days" you can have when devising, as well as the process's moments of joy and inspiration. She discusses what it was that triggered her excitement about adapting this well-loved children's book, as well as her shifting role in the rehearsal room as she works with a range of inventive individuals from different performance traditions.

"I go into rehearsals not knowing. It is terrifying, devising, nail-biting. But it's thrilling. You offer up a challenge: how are we going to do this? And you get fifteen brilliant ideas."

(Photo of Sally Cookson by Anthony Robling)