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Dame Judi Dench in conversation
Photograph: Orange Tree Theatre

A London theatre is streaming Dame Judi Dench in conversation with Gyles Brandreth, darlings

Chris Waywell

In a special one-off, Richmond’s Orange Tree Theatre is delving into its archives to raise funds and keep it going through lockdown. The results are theatre legend Dame Judi Dench in conversation with foul-pullover legend Gyles Brandreth in an interview recorded at the theatre back in 2017. It promises to be an anecdote-packed 90 minutes from one of UK theatre’s starriest stars.

Judi Dench has had an extraordinary career on stage and screen, appearing with literally hundreds of huge names. According to the Orange Tree: ‘We hear about John Gielgud and Peggy Ashcroft; Clint Eastwood and Johnny Depp; about Ken Branagh, Peter Hall and how to speak Shakespeare.’ She’s played Queen Victoria and been on ‘The Archers’.

Like all of London’s theatre and venues, the Orange Tree has had to shut up shop, postpone performances and do what it can to survive. So this is an entertaining way of doing just that. And in case you think it might all be luvvie in-jokes, don’t forget that Dench has also played 007’s boss, M. As she says to Bond: ‘If you think for one moment I don’t have the balls to send a man out to die, your instincts are dead wrong.’ So just watch yourself, Brandreth.

‘Dame Judi Dench in Conversation’ is available to stream from 3pm BST on Sun Apr 26. £4.99 (72 hour rental). You can preorder now. All funds go to support the theatre.

See the full line-up for the National Theatre at Home free streaming series.

Find more great theatre to stream at home right now.

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