Casting for Alice Munro première in Edinburgh

David Chadderton

The cast has been announced for the first ever adaptation of Alice Munro's The View from Castle Rock about the nineteenth century Scottish migrant experience to be produced by Edinburgh International Book Festival in association with theatre company Stellar Quines during this August's festival.

The cast will comprise Simon Donaldson, Brian James O’Sullivan, Lewis Howden, Sally Reid and Nicola Jo Cully. The script will be a word-for-word adaptation from Munro's writing by director Marilyn Imrie and playwright Linda McLean.

Imrie said, "we knew this company of actors would bring all their particular vocal, musical and storytelling skills and deft ability to capture and portray character to this Book Festival production, and do justice to the words of one of our greatest living writers.

"We are all currently rehearsing in a hot church hall, being seasick, heart sick and homesick, and, with the musical support of Edinburgh’s inspiring Castle Chorus and our sound designer Pippa Murphy, learning to sing the greatest of the majestic old Scottish metrical psalms which echoed over the Ettrick Hills in 1818."

Nick Barley, Director of the Edinburgh International Book Festival, added, "Alice Munro’s magisterial short stories in The View from Castle Rock are a powerful reminder that human migration is nothing new—especially to Scottish people whose ancestors took the decision to voyage across the world in the hope of a better life.

"For this stunning stage adaptation, Stellar Quines has selected a stellar cast to portray Munro’s own Scottish ancestors in this unforgettable Book Festival co-production."

The production, which will be performed at artSpace@StMarks in Castle Terrace, is supported by the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund and is also part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

From 31 August, it will tour to the Borders—including the Ettrick Valley, home of Munro’s ancestors—stopping at Peebles, Hawick, Ettrickbridge and Galashiels.