Lolita Chakrabarti Biography

  • FULL BIOG
  • SHORT BIOG
  • 100 WORD BIOGS

Lolita Chakrabarti is an award-winning playwright and actress.  Writing credits include Life of Pi and Red Velvet and acting credits include Hamlet, Riviera and All is True. She trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and has carved out an innovative, diverse and long running career. 

Lolita adapted the classic novel Life of Pi, which won four awards at the UK Theatre Awards, including Best Play and Best Director. It will open in London's West End in 2021 after premiered to 5-star reviews at the Sheffield Crucible in July 2019. Based on the award winning novel by Yann Martell, which received ten Oscar nominations as a film, Life of Pi's theatrical world premiere received huge critical acclaim. 

In the same month, Invisible Cities premiered at the Manchester International Festival, which Lolita adapted from the classic novel by Italo Calvino of the same name. It was an ambitious and stunning production and a collaboration between Rambert dance company, 59 Productions and Lolita. Invisible Cities also opened at the Brisbane Festival in September 2019.

In 2012 Red Velvet premiered at the Tricycle Theatre in London.  It returned to the Tricycle in 2014, before transferring to St Ann's Warehouse in New York and onto the Garrick Theatre in London's West End, as part of Sir Kenneth Branagh's Plays at the Garrick season.  Red Velvet was nominated for nine major awards including two Oliviers. Lolita won the Evening Standard Theatre Award for Most Promising Playwright, The Critics Circle Award for Most Promising Playwright and the AWA Award for Arts and Culture.  

Lolita curated The Greatest Wealth at the Old Vic in London in 2018, commissioning eight monologues of which she wrote one, about the NHS on its 70th birthday.  Directed by Adrian Lester, it was a fitting tribute to an incredible history and starred Jade Anouka, Louise English, Dervla Kirwan, Ruth Madeley, Art Malik, Meera Syal, Sophie Stone and David Threlfall. The series was updated in July 2020, in the mist of the coronavirus. with a monologue written by Bernardine Evaristo and performed by Sharon D Clarke.

Calmer, written and starring Lolita, will open at The Rep in Birmingham in 2021.

Other writing credits The Goddess for Woman's Hour BBC Radio 4 and Last Seen Joy for the Almeida Theatre, London.

Lolita also worked as dramaturgist on Message in a Bottle, a show by Katie Prince and Sting, which opened at the Peacock Theatre in February 2020.

As an actress Lolita has enjoyed a long and varied career.  She appeared as Queen Gertrude, opposite Tom Hiddleston, in Sir Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet (RADA) and starred in Fanny & Alexandra at the Old Vic in 2018.  

Other theatre credits include Last Seen - Joy (Almeida Theatre) which she also wrote, The Great Game, Afghanistan (Tricycle Theatre), the lead role in Free Outgoing (Royal Court and Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh), John Gabriel Borkman (Donmar Warehouse), Grimm’s Tales (Young Vic) and Robert LePage’s Midsummer Night’s Dream (National Theatre).

TV roles have include J K Rowling’s A Casual Vacancy (BBC1/HBO), Criminal (Netflix), Defending The Guilty (BBC), To Provide All People (BBC2), Delicious (Sky One), Born to Kill (CH4), Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands (ITV), Vera (ITV), Jekyll and Hyde (ITV), My Mad Fat Diary 3 (E4), Death in Paradise (BBC1), One Night (BBC1), Smoke (Sky1), Outnumbered (BBC1), WPC Jamilla Blake in The Bill (ITV), Fortysomething (BBC), Extras and earlier this year she appeared in Season 2 of the hugely popular Sky series Riviera

Lolita produced Of Mary, a short film directed by Adrian Lester, which won Best Short Film at PAFF, Los Angeles.

Forthcoming acting projects include the eagerly anticipated Wheel of Time on Amazon and Vigil for BBC1.

Lolita is on the board of RADA and Rambert Dance.  She lives in South East London with husband, actor Adrian Lester and their two daughters.

Click here for IMDB listing.

Lolita Chakrabarti is an award-winning playwright and actress. Her writing credits include Red VelvetLife of Pi and Invisible Cities and as an actress credits include RivieraHamletCriminal and Jekyll and Hyde.

Lolita adapted the classic novel Life of Pi, recently won four awards at the UK theatre Awards including Best Play. It will open in London's West End in 2021, after premiered to 5-star reviews at the Sheffield Crucible in July 2019.

In the same month, Invisible Cities premiered at the Manchester International Festival.  Adapted from the classic novel of the same name by Italo Calvino, the ambitious and stunning production was a collaboration between Rambert dance company, 59 Productions and Lolita.

In 2012 Red Velvet premiered at the Tricycle Theatre in London.  It returned to the Tricycle in 2014, before transferring to New York and the West End.  Red Velvet was nominated for nine major awards including two Oliviers. Lolita won the Evening Standard Theatre Award for Most Promising Playwright, The Critics Circle Award for Most Promising Playwright and the AWA Award for Arts and Culture.  

Lolita curated The Greatest Wealth at the Old Vic in 2018, commissioning eight monologues of which she wrote one, about the NHS on its 70th birthday.  Other writing credits The Goddess for Woman's Hour BBC Radio 4 and Last Seen Joy for the Almeida.

As an actress credits include Fanny & Alexander (Old Vic), Hamlet directed by Sir Kenneth Brannagh (RADA), To Provide All People (BBC2), Delicious (Sky One), Born to Kill (CH4), Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands (ITV), Vera (ITV), Jekyll and Hyde (ITV), My Mad Fat Diary 3 (E4), Death in Paradise (BBC1), One Night (BBC1), Smoke (Sky1), Outnumbered (BBC1), J K Rowling’s A Casual Vacancy (BBC1/HBO), Riviera (Sky Atlantic), Criminal (Netflix) and Defending The Guilty (BBC).

Lolita produced Of Mary, a short film directed by Adrian Lester, which won Best Short Film at PAFF, Los Angeles.

Forthcoming projects include starring in Calmer at The Rep, also written by Lolita, Wheel of Time (Amazon) and Vigil (BBC1).

Writing

Lolita Chakrabarti is an award-winning playwright, with credits including Red Velvet, the award-winning Life of Pi and Invisible Cities. Red Velvet opened in both London and New York and was nominated for nine major awards. In 2019 Lolita adapted the classic novel Life of Pi, which will open in the West End in 2021. In the same month, the ambitious Invisible Cities premiered at the Manchester International Festival. Other writing credits include a monologue for The Greatest Wealth (Old Vic), which Lolita also curated, The Goddess for BBC Radio 4 and Last Seen Joy for the Almeida Theatre in London.

Acting

Lolita Chakarbarti has carved out an innovative, diverse and long running acting career on both stage and screen. Theatre credits include playing Queen Gertrude, opposite Tom Hiddleston, in Sir Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet (RADA), Fanny & Alexandra (Old Vic), Free Outgoing (Royal Court), John Gabriel Borkman (Donmar Warehouse) and The Great Game, Afghanistan (Tricycle).  TV credits include J K Rowling’s A Casual Vacancy (BBC1/HBO), To Provide All People (BBC2), Delicious (Sky One), Beowulf (ITV), Jekyll and Hyde (ITV), Outnumbered (BBC1), Riviera (Sky),  Criminal (Netflix) and Defending The Guilty (BBC). 

Writing & acting

Lolita Chakarbarti is an award-winning playwright and actress. Writing credits include the award-winning Life of Pi, which will open in the West End in 2021, the ambitious Invisible Cities (MIF) and Red Velvet, which opened in London’s West End and New York.  Theatre credits include playing Queen Gertrude, opposite Tom Hiddleston, in Sir Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet (RADA), Fanny & Alexandra (Old Vic) and Free Outgoing (Royal Court).  TV credits include A Casual Vacancy (BBC1/HBO), To Provide All People (BBC2), Beowulf (ITV), Jekyll and Hyde (ITV), Riviera (Sky), Criminal (Netflix) and Defending The Guilty (BBC).  

TWITTER FEED

Am feeling so inspired by stories of fearless women who change the world for good. Leading the way and showing what is possible for those who come next. Thank you @netflix for #KnockDownTheHouse and #RBG And @SkyUK for #Hilary

"One of the criticisms I've faced over the years is that I'm not aggressive enough or assertive enough, or maybe somehow, because I'm empathetic, it means I'm weak. I totally rebel against that. I refuse to believe that you cannot be both compassionate and strong." #JacindaArdern

In a bar in #Derry a few years ago I met this man , only briefly . He was ill with dementia but was being cared for well and could kind of engage . His death today reminds me that great humans can still exist . Thank you #johnhume for everything u did@for us in #NornIrn

Just saw Imagine:Kate Prince @BBCOne on iplayer. About Kate @ZooNationUK and the making of #MessageInaBottle for @Sadlers_Wells It was amazing to be a small part of that journey with some of the most talented people I’ve ever met. Please watch. You won’t be disappointed.

Load More...