60 years ago, seismic changes ripped through the cultural establishment and together with music and fashion, British Theatre underwent an explosion of creativity and talent, the impact of which was felt around the world and is still tangible today. It was a new Renaissance.
Playing a central role and pivotal to these creative and social shifts were a group of young actresses including Joan Plowright, Judi Dench, Maggie Smith and Eileen Atkins. All have received Damehoods in recognition of their outstanding contributions to the acting profession.
All have gone from fledgling actresses in the 1950s to national treasures and have become acting royalty. Beyond their professional lives, as friends they’ve watched each other’s careers grow and bloom, seen each other’s children grow up and have celebrated and commiserated life events together.
And all of them, as anyone can observe, are spectacularly comfortable in their own skin: larger than life characters whose personalities reflect the extraordinary experience of playing hundreds of characters and the great joy they’ve brought to the world. They are full of wit and wisdom with a lifetime of knowledge to share. Now they look back at key moments in their lives and careers and talk informally, sharing anecdotes, insights and memories with each other and with us.
TEA WITH THE DAMES invites you to spend time with these theatrical icons off screen as they talk about their lives now and then: their experience in theatre, TV and cinema and the memories that they have from when they were bright young things right up to the present day - now looking back with the wisdom of the year.