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Life in Stages S1 Ep3: Adrian Lester and Meera Syal in conversation at the National Theatre


Adrian Lester and Meera Syal share their experiences of forming acting careers at a time when they rarely saw people of colour in the industry, some thoughts on the empathy of storytelling, and memories of drama school. This is their Life in Stages.

While you may recognise Adrian from Hustle, his multi-award-winning stage career includes Company (Donmar, West End), Hymn (Almeida), Red Velvet (Tricycle) and As You Like It (Lyric). At the National his credits include Sweeny Todd (1993), Henry V (2003), Othello (2013) and our film of Romeo & Juliet (2021).

Meera Syal first gained recognition as part of the team for Goodness Gracious Me and her film credits include Yesterday (2019) and Beautiful Thing (1996). Her stage career began at the Royal Court and at the National, she’s performed in plays including Rafta, Rafta (2007) and Behind the Beautiful Forevers (2014).