Laura Wade is an English playwright.

Laura Wade
Born (1977-10-16) 16 October 1977 (age 44)
Bedford, Bedfordshire, England
Alma materBristol University
PartnerSamuel West

Early lifeEdit

Wade was born in Bedford, Bedfordshire. She grew up in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, where her father worked for a computer company.[1] After completing her secondary education at Lady Manners School in Bakewell, Derbyshire, she studied drama at Bristol University and was later a member of the Royal Court Theatre Young Writers' Programme.


Laura Wade's first play, Limbo, was produced at the Sheffield Crucible Studio Theatre in 1996. 16 Winters was produced at the Bristol Old Vic Basement Theatre in 2000. After university she worked for the children's theatre company Playbox Theatre in Warwick. Wade's adaptation of W. H. Davies' Young Emma opened at the Finborough Theatre, London (where she was later Writer-in-Residence) in December 2003. Both Young Emma and 16 Winters were directed by Tamara Harvey, a contemporary from Bristol. In 2004, Wade was a writer on attachment at Soho Theatre and her play Colder Than Here was produced there in February 2005.[2] Her next play Breathing Corpses played at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs in March 2005.[3] In March 2006, she returned to the Soho Theatre with Other Hands.[4] 2010 marked her reappearance at the Sheffield Crucible with her reworking of Alice in Wonderland, entitled Alice.[5]

Wade's first radio play, Otherkin, was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 30 August 2007,[6] a 45-minute play billed as episode 2 of the Looking for Angels series. Her second, Hum, about the Bristol Hum, was broadcast on BBC Radio 3 on 20 May 2009. Between these two she also wrote Coughs and Sneezes for the Radio 4 series Fact to Fiction. In April 2010, her play Posh began a sell-out run at the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre, London. An article about Wade in the London Evening Standard at the time drew parallels between the Riot Club, the subject of Posh, and the Bullingdon Club, an exclusive Oxford University dining society.[7] On 11 May 2012, an updated version of Posh opened at the Duke of York's Theatre in London, Wade's first play to appear in the West End. A film adaptation of the play, The Riot Club,[8] directed by Lone Scherfig, was released in 2014.[9] In February 2015, the regional premiere of Posh was co-produced by Nottingham Playhouse and Salisbury Playhouse.[10]

In 2015, Wade adapted Sarah Waters novel Tipping the Velvet into a stage play of the same name. The play premiered at Lyric Hammersmith in September 2015,[11] before transferring to the Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh.[12]

On 4 July 2018, Wade's play Home, I'm Darling premiered at Theatr Clwyd. It was directed by Tamara Harvey, and starred Katherine Parkinson.[13] The play transferred to the National Theatre for a summer 2018 run,[14] to the Duke of York's Theatre in January 2019,[15] and later won Best Comedy at the 2019 Laurence Olivier Awards.[16]

Wade adapted the unfinished Jane Austen novel The Watsons into a play, which premiered at Chichester Festival Theatre on 3 November 2018, directed by Samuel West.[17] It had a further run at the Menier Chocolate Factory from 20 September 2019.[18] The West End transfer of The Watsons was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.[19]

Wade's plays are published by Oberon Books in the UK and by Dramatists Play Service in the US.

On 25 August 2022 it was announced that Laura Wade would be one of the writers and executive producers of the new Disney+ series Rivals, based on the novel by Jilly Cooper.[20]

Personal lifeEdit

From 2007 to 2011, Wade lived with actor Samuel West,[21] son of actors Timothy West and Prunella Scales.[22][23] After a two-year split, Wade and West reunited, and now have two daughters, born in 2014 and 2017.[24]






  1. ^ Cooke, Rachel (4 April 2010). "Laura Wade: the girl in the Tories' soup". The Guardian. London.
  2. ^ "Theatre review: Colder Than Here at Soho Theatre". Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  3. ^ "Theatre review: Breathing Corpses at Royal Court Theatre Upstairs". Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  4. ^ "Theatre review: Other Hands at Soho Theatre". Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  5. ^ Wade, Laura. "Oberon Books – The UK's most exciting independent publisher". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  6. ^ "BBC Radio 4 - Afternoon Drama, Looking for Angels, Looking for Angels: Otherkin". 30 August 2007. Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  7. ^ Curtis, Nick (7 April 2010). "Posh boys have problems too". London Evening Standard. London. Archived from the original on 16 May 2010. Retrieved 21 May 2010.
  8. ^ "The Riot Club". IMDb.
  9. ^ de Semlyen, Phil (13 May 2014). "New Trailer For The Riot Club". Empire. Bauer Consumer Media. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
  10. ^ Snow, Georgia (31 October 2014). "Posh leads Nottingham Playhouse's spring 2015 season". The Stage. Nottingham. Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  11. ^ "London's Lyric Hammersmith to Present World Premiere of Laura Wade's Tipping the Velvet". Playbill. 15 April 2015. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  12. ^ "Brian Cox and Bill Paterson return to Lyceum for 50th anniversary season". The List. 14 April 2015. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  13. ^, Dewynters Ltd |. "Theatr Clwyd EN". Theatr Clwyd EN. Retrieved 29 July 2018.
  14. ^ "Home Im Darling". 11 April 2018.
  15. ^ "Home, I'm Darling".
  16. ^ "Winners list for the Olivier Awards 2019 with Mastercard | Official Website".
  17. ^ "The Watsons review – Austen heroine brought stunningly back to life". 8 November 2018.
  18. ^ "The Watsons".
  19. ^[bare URL]
  20. ^ "Disney+ Reveals New Original Series "Rivals", an Outrageously Bold Eight-Part Saga Full of Power, Betrayal and Romance, Based on Jilly Cooper's Iconic Novel".
  21. ^ Cooke, Rachel (25 November 2007). "Best of the West: Rachel Cooke interviews actor Sam West". The Observer. UK. Retrieved 6 June 2015.
  22. ^ Paton, Maureen (10 December 2011). "Sam West: My family values". The Guardian. UK. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
  23. ^ Lockyer, Daphne (1 January 2012). "Samuel West: 'Good actors do get the roles - and recognition - they deserve'". The Daily Telegraph. UK. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
  24. ^ Thorpe, Vanessa (7 September 2014). "Laura Wade: her play Posh put a spotlight on the spoilt". The Guardian. UK. Retrieved 30 June 2015.

External linksEdit