Further casting for RSC’s Magician’s Elephant

Published: 19 August 2021
Reporter: Steve Orme

Renu Arora who plays Madame LaVaughn
Amy Booth-Steel is the narrator Credit: Brandon Bishop
Miriam Nyarko takes the role of Adele Credit: John Clark

The Royal Shakespeare Company has announced further casting for The Magician's Elephant, a new musical by Nancy Harris and Marc Teitler which will have its première in Stratford in October 2021.

Actor, writer and storyteller Renu Arora will play Madame LaVaughn who finds herself paralysed after an elephant—conjured by The Magician of the play's title—crashes through the roof of an opera house, crushing her legs.

As an actor and musician, Arora has performed at theatres including Bristol Old Vic, Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre and Theatre Royal Stratford East. As a director, her work includes performances at Arcola Theatre, Soho Theatre, Tamasha, Tara Arts, Riverside Studios, Oval House and the Kings Head Theatre. As a composer, she wrote and recorded the vocal soundtrack for Rani Moorthy's Who's Sari Now? at Curve, Leicester and Stratford East.

She will be joined by Amy Booth-Steel in the role of the narrator. She has appeared in the West End in Heathers, Sister Act and The Sound of Music.

Returning to the RSC is Miriam Nyarko who will play Adele. She was Lisa James in the 2019 RSC musical adaptation of The Boy in the Dress, based on the novel by David Walliams. Nyarko also played Lavender in the West End production of Matilda the Musical, also for the RSC.

Lauren Jones takes the role of Lisette and Chrystine Symone plays Lamplighter.

The Magician's Elephant will mark the re-opening of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and the return of audiences to indoor performances at the RSC in Stratford for the first time since March 2020. Adapted from Kate DiCamillo's children’s book, it will run from Thursday 14 October 2021 until Saturday 1 January 2022.