Reviews: What Are Critics Saying About A Little Life in London's West End? | Playbill

The Verdict Reviews: What Are Critics Saying About A Little Life in London's West End?

Directed by Ivo Van Hove, the stage adaptation of Hanya Yanagihara's book is receiving its English language world premiere.

Luke Thompson and James Norton Jan Versweyveld

Reviews are rolling in for the West End premiere of Ivo van Hove's adaptation of A Little Life. Based on the novel by Hanya Yanagihara, previews for the English-language stage adaptation began March 25 in London's Harold Pinter Theatre where it opened April 5. 

Starring in the cast are familiar faces James Norton (Grantchester, Belleville), Luke Thompson (Bridgerton, King Lear), Omari Douglas (Nolly, Cabaret), and Zach Wyatt (The Witcher: Blood Origin, Bartholomew Fair) as four friends—a lawyer, an actor, an architect, and an artist. Taking place over the course of three decades, A Little Life follows them from college to their middle-age lives in New York City and explores the complex relationships between them.

Read the reviews here.

The Arts Desk (Aleks Sierz)

Broadway World (Cindy Marcolina)

Culture Whisper (Holly O'Mahony)

Daily Express (Neil Norman)

Daily Mail (Laura Fox)

The Evening Standard (Nick Curtis)

Financial Times (Sarah Hemming)*

The Guardian (Arifa Akbar)

The Independent (Alice Saville)

i News (Fiona Mountford)*

London Theatre (Suzy Evans)

London Theatre 1 (Ben Ross)

The Mail+ (Luke Jones)*

The New Statesman (Katherine Cowles)*

The New York Times (Matt Wolf)*

The Pink News (Reiss Smith)

The Stage (Sam Marlowe)*

The Telegraph (Dominic Cavendish)*

Theatre Weekly (Greg Stewart)

TimeOut (Andrzej Lukowski)

The Times (Clive Davis)*

Variety (David Benedict)

West End Best Friend (Callum Wallace)

What's On Stage (Sarah Crompton)

*This review may require creating a free account or a paid subscription.

Playbill will continue to update this list as reviews come in.

The book was adapted for the stage by Koen Tachelet, van Hove, and Yanagihara. This production marks the first time the stage version will be performed in English. Its run at the Harold Pinter Theatre follows a run at Richmond Theatre March 14-18. A Little Life has already been extended at the West End venue, and will transfer a second time to complete its run at the Savoy Theatre July 4-August 5.

Zach Wyatt, James Norton, Luke Thompson, and Omari Douglas Jan Versweyveld

Van Hove directs the production which features set, lighting, and video design by Jan Versweyveld, costume design by An D’Huys, music and sound design by Eric Sleichim, casting by Julia Horan, and hair, makeup, and prosthetics design by Susanna Peretz. Versweyveld, D’Huys, and Sleichim are frequent collaborators of van Hove's, and previously worked on the play's previous production in Amsterdam which subsequently played Brooklyn Academy of Music.

Wessex Grove, Gavin Kalin Productions, and Playful Productions present the production which opens booking for the extension March 10. A Little Life has also partnered with Applause for Thought which works on supporting the wellbeing and mental health of the production's company through creating safe spaces.



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