The Lady With A Dog

13 September 2023 to 8 October 2023 Upstairs at the Gatehouse

The Chekhov story that the writer Vladimir Nabokov called ‘one of the greatest stories ever written’ returns to the UK stage in a full-length bittersweet romantic comedy transported to Jazz Age Britain.

This adaptation by Mark Giesser is skilfully reimagined in a dazzling art-deco aesthetic with the affluent middle-class characters fully fleshed out merging imaginary conversations with reality to reveal more about their anxieties and desires. With new choreography and movement by Xena Gusthart (The Bodyguard, Bat out of Hell) the production transcends the relevancy of three eras of time: 19th century Moscow and Yalta where the source material is set, 1920s Britain, and the present day that the story is a parable for.

Damian Granville is a banker and devoted family man with an unconventional way of taking his summer holidays: he travels alone and looks for a woman to seduce. This particular year he spots a beautiful young lady walking a white Pomeranian dog, Anne Dennis. In this contemporary adaptation, Anne serves as an allegory for the modern politician’s wife, often imprisoned by societal expectations and public image. So when this skilful player, sure of his success, discovers Anne isn’t quite what he bargained for, the two are torn between love and duty.

Writer and Director Mark Giesser said, “The lovers in Chekhov's beautiful and poignant story live in an ordered world that they couldn't know was about to be shattered by the First World War, the watershed event that created the world in which we now live. So I wanted to explore how that event might have affected them and the relationship they develop, in a setting perhaps a bit closer to us than Chekhov's pre-war Russia.

Company information

  • Written and directed by Mark Giesser    
  • Assistant directed by Isaac Bernier-Doyle
  • Choreography by Xena Gusthart        
  • Set design by Intellectual Propery            
  • Lighting design by Sam M Owen            
  • Costume design by Alice McNicholas       
  • Stage management by Denisha Parmenter


Beth Burrows, Laura Glover, Richard Lynson, Toby Manley

Listings information

13th September – 8th October

Upstairs at the Gatehouse, Highgate Village, London N6 4BD, Tuesday – Sunday: £24.00 – £22.00

Further Information: