Shadow and Bone

Zoë plays Baghra, a stern teacher, in this major new fantasy series based on Leigh Bardugo’s bestselling Grishaverse novels. Streaming now on Netflix.

Constellations

Zoë stars as physicist Marianne, opposite Peter Capaldi, in the Donmar Warehouse's revival of Constellations at the Vaudeville Theatre, London. The play explores a relationship through a cosmological lens. Performances: 23 June to 24 July. Tickets from Nimax Theatres.

Britannia

The third series of Sky Atlantic's epic drama about the Romans invading ancient Britain, starring Zoë as vengeful Queen Antedia,  will be available to stream from 24 August.

Social

Celebrating 19 years of ZoeWanamaker.com

30 July 2021 01:23

Waaay back in 2002, teenage me had an idea: why not create a website especially for fans of the amazing Zoë Wanamaker?

This site was launched on 30 July of that year, and thirtysomething me can’t quite believe that today is its 19th birthday. It’s older than I was when I started it!

Zoë is still being amazing (most recently, she wowed theatregoers in Constellations, while Britannia series three is soon to be released), and there’s still so much I’d like to do with ZoeWanamaker.com. So much to write, so much to design, so many photos to share...

I’m extremely grateful to still be managing the site and thankful to everyone who visits it. I'd like to give special thanks to Zoë, her PA Vanessa and my mum for their kindness and support.

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‘Wanamaker is brilliant’ – Constellations reviews and production photos

3 July 2021 17:40

Constellations’ press night was held on 1 July at London’s Vaudeville Theatre, with Zoë and Peter Capaldi taking to the stage after Sheila Atim and Ivanno Jeremiah (the first two of four casts). As you’re probably aware by now, Nick Payne’s dazzling ‘multiverse’ play centres on quantum physicist Marianne and beekeeper Roland. The audience watches multiple versions of the couple’s relationship as the story shifts from one universe to another then another then another...

To celebrate the West End opening of Constellations, the Donmar Warehouse (which is staging the show at the Vaudeville) released several beautiful production photos by Marc Brenner (who also took fantastic photos of the cast in rehearsal). They suggest an emotive production filled with intimacy, poignancy and humorous moments. The complexity of the scientific ideas underpinning the story is balanced by the simplicity of the set and costumes.

These are my favourite of the Constellations production photos, and you can find others (and larger versions) on the Donmar’s Twitter thread, BroadwayWorld UK, London Theatre Direct and WhatsOnStage. Plus, Getty Images has photos of Zoë alongside Peter Capaldi and Michael Longhurst, the play's director.

Zoë and Peter Capaldi spoke to London’s Evening Standard newspaper about the importance of bringing plays back to West End audiences following months of theatre closures. ‘Theatre is an experience and a shared event, and I think people are really starved of that,’ Zoë said.

The need for theatre was humorously highlighted by one of the press night’s famous attendees, broadcaster Victoria Coren Mitchell. ‘It was so exciting to see a play after so long, like seeing a unicorn,’ she quipped.

Constellations has received a steady stream of enthusiastic reviews since press night – here are the highlights.

‘Wanamaker is brilliant; needy, intelligent, neurotic and desperate for control. As she confronts her own mortality, Wanamaker shows a huge range of emotion, from desperation to quiet acceptance. Capaldi is quieter and more reactive; observing Marianne, often keeping his distance and using a single gesture or word to change the course of a scene.’ – Aliya Al-Hassan, BroadwayWorld UK, *****

‘In Payne’s hauntingly beautiful two-hander, Marianne and Roland meet at a Barbeque and start a relationship. Or maybe they don’t. Perhaps that relationship works out, or perhaps it doesn’t. Much like Marianne’s field of study, this narrative isn’t linear. Each scene is replayed multiple times, exploring the different outcomes that each decision (or non-decision) could lead to. [...] [Constellations is] a theatrical experience that is out of this world’ – Greg Stewart, Theatre Weekly, *****

‘[Constellations] feels alive with ideas, action and fizz, but is balanced with stillness and depth. Changes of scenes (and time-frames) are sometimes indicated simply by a tonal inflection or change of stance [...] [Zoë and Peter Capaldi] bring a meditative quality’ – Arifa Akbar, Guardian, ****

‘Yesterday’s double opening showed the play works as well with young actors, charming Ivanno Jeremiah and the sublime Sheila Atim, as it does with serio-comic veterans Peter Capaldi and Zoe Wanamaker. [...] This is a short, sharp, smart hit of first-class drama, that humanises the randomness of the universe.’ – Nick Curtis, Evening Standard, **** (contains plot spoilers)

‘It’s a play that asks ‘‘what if?’’ a hundred times over – while we may ask ourselves that question on a regular basis, we can only ever make our choices once, so it’s fascinating to observe all the different plausible outcomes of the multiverse unfold. [...] ‘Peter Capaldi and Zoe Wanamaker are both superb in their respective roles’ – Chris Selman, Gay Times, ****

‘Instead of just portraying characters, they became them [...] Capaldi, dressed in his Shoreditch boho best, was particularly good at conveying male befuddlement. Nobody does exasperated intensity as well as Wanamaker.’ – Clive Davis, The Times

‘Constellations is short, (bitter)sweet, and brisk; it runs for just 70 minutes. But it packs more of a couple’s lifetime into those 70 minutes than many a longer play [...] A play that is an experiment in theatrical form itself becomes a vibrant expression of it.’ – Mark Shenton, ShentonStage (contains plot spoilers)

‘Constellations is a play told in fractures. Scenes crack apart and remake themselves constantly, a series of possible versions of the romance of Marianne (quantum theory enthusiast) and Roland (bee enthusiast) [...] Sheila Atim and Ivanno Jeremiah burst onstage for the first press performance, followed by Zoe Wanamaker and Peter Capaldi at a more sedate, though no less moving, pace.’ – Laura De Lisle, TheArtsDesk.com (contains plot spoilers)

Zoë and Peter Capaldi are set to perform Constellations until 24 July. Tickets to the play are available from Nimax Theatres (which owns the Vaudeville) – but do book asap, if possible, as the run has almost sold out.

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Queen Antedia is back! Britannia series 3 release date confirmed

28 June 2021 11:18

‘Sound the alarm. Gather your tribe. Get ready for battle.’

With those compelling words and a suitably frenetic teaser video, production company Vertigo Films heralds the release of the third series of Britannia. The weird and wonderful historical epic, starring Zoë, David Morrissey, Sophie Okonedo, Eleanor Worthington-Cox, Mackenzie Crook, Annabel Scholey and many more, makes an eagerly-awaited return to Sky and NOW TV on 24 August. Fans will be able to stream all eight new episodes from that date or watch weekly on Sky Atlantic.

Culturess.com is looking forward to watching ‘the always wonderful Zoë Wanamaker’ in series three, and so am I! Having been deposed, imprisoned then caged and sold at auction (!), Queen Antedia hasn’t been having a very jolly time since the Romans invaded ancient Britain in series one; but perhaps that’ll change in August and she’ll get to be fierce and fabulous again...

Surely it’s time for the former leader of the Regni tribe to claw her way back to power?! She certainly looks up for a fight in this close-up from a newly-published Britannia series three promo photo.

Loving how Antedia’s look has evolved – I’d describe her current style as ‘punk military’, and it really suits her!

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Constellations: Everything we know so far...

20 June 2021 23:06

Wow, we only have a few days left to wait until the first performance of the Donmar Warehouse's suitably starry revival of Constellations with Zoë and Peter Capaldi. They'll be on stage at the Vaudeville Theatre in London's West End from 23 June to 24 July. You can check performance dates and book tickets via Nimax Theatres now.

Written by Nick Payne and directed by Michael Longhurst, Constellations promises to be a dazzling - and intense - production. The play, which looks at a romantic relationship through a cosmological lens, is a two-hander and runs for about 70 minutes without an interval.

A play set in the multiverse...

Zoë and Peter Capaldi play quantum physicist Marianne and beekeeper Roland. With them, audiences will journey through a 'multiverse'; in essence, experiencing different versions of the characters' relationship in different universes. (The physics behind the concept of the multiverse would no doubt make my brain hurt, but the central idea - multiple versions of a relationship - is straightforward enough. It reminds me of 2013's Passion Play, in which theatregoers saw two versions of the same character, one played by Zoë and the other by Samantha Bond.)

Here's how the Donmar introduces Constellations' plot:

'One drink. And if you never want to see me again you never have to see me again.'

A quantum physicist and a beekeeper meet at a barbeque. They hit it off, or perhaps they don’t. They go home together, or maybe they go their separate ways. In the multiverse, with every possible future ahead of them, a love of honey could make all the difference.

The Financial Times offers insights into the subtle way in which the multiverse will be brought to life. 'Pivotal moments are played and replayed with varying results as the play jumps between potential outcomes, with the actors nipping between dimensions simply by shifting stance or changing intonation,' it explains.

Stunning publicity and rehearsal photos

These beautiful photos by Charlie Gray have been released to whet our appetite for the show itself. They feature Zoë and Peter Capaldi alongside the pairs of actors taking part in the other versions of Constellations (Sheila Atim and Ivanno Jeremiah; Omari Douglas and Russell Tovey; Anna Maxwell Martin and Chris O'Dowd). Click on the images for larger versions.

I love how you can see Zoe and Peter Capaldi have a bond, a rapport, that's sure to play out well on stage.

Also check out the excellent rehearsal photos by Marc Brenner. There's a good selection on the Donmar's website, BroadwayWorld's UK site, WhatsOnStage and Theatre Cafe, as well as the photographer's Instagram profile. Artist Valentina has created a fantastic drawing inspired by one of the photos.

Insights from Zoë and Peter Capaldi

What's it like to act in a multiverse play? 'I find it exciting, in a way. Because you can't take anything for granted, it seems. I mean, this is why it's so relevant,' Zoë told The Sunday Times in a recent article about Constellations and the science behind the story.

She also shares her thoughts on the play, alongside Peter Capaldi, in this short video from the Donmar.

If you're a member of the Donmar, check your emails. You should've received a newsletter including the link to an exclusive video about Constellations (I don't think I'm permitted to share it here), featuring Zoe, Peter Capaldi and others involved with the production.

This morning, Zoë appeared on the bright and cheerful ITV1 show Martin & Roman's Weekend Best, while Peter Capaldi was a guest on BBC1's rather more serious Andrew Marr Show.

Roll on Wednesday!

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Celebrating Zoë’s birthday!

13 May 2021 04:15

I’m sure you’ll want to join me today, 13 May, in wishing Zoë a magical birthday and many happy returns! She’s talented, kind, compassionate and wise with an unmistakable laugh. The world needs more people like her; now more so than ever.

The next 12 months look set to be particularly exciting for Zoë and her fans alike. She’s currently preparing to star alongside Peter Capaldi in Constellations, which opens in London’s West End next month, and will also soon be seen in Britannia series three on Sky Atlantic.

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