Michelle trained for the theatre at the Rose Bruford College of Speech and Drama in the late sixties and at Marcel Marceau’s L’École Internationale de Mime in Paris. She has a postgraduate Certificate in Film Studies (BFI/London University), an Honorary Doctorate (Portsmouth University) and is a Fellow of The Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance.
Her first novel Goodnight Mister Tom has won awards in the UK, America and Australia and has been translated into eleven languages. It has been read on the radio and as an audio book by Patrick Malahide.It was screened on television starring the late John Thaw, winning seven television awards including a BAFTA.
As Mikki Magorian she has performed in plays, musicals and one-woman shows, has written lyrics for composers Gary Carpenter (for the musical version of Goodnight Mister Tom) Stephen Keeling, Bob Buckley and Alexander L’Estrange.
In 2011 Goodnight Mister Tom celebrated its 30th anniversary and was brought out in a special Puffin edition alongside Back Home. This year both books will be coming out as Puffin Modern Classics. A stage play version of Goodnight Mister Tom opened at Chichester Festival Theatre with Oliver Ford Davies as Mister Tom before going on a regional tour. While the cast were receiving wonderful reviews and standing ovations in the fourteen theatres where they appeared, the BBC were broadcasting a ten part abridged reading of it on Radio 4 Extra and a four part dramatisation of Back Home while Mikki was commuting to the AudioGO studio in Bath where she was recording a reading of another of her books, A Little Love Song. Her other novels are Cuckoo in the Nest, A Spoonful of Jam and Just Henry.
In the same year Just Henry (a Costa award winner) was made into a ninety minute drama by ITV Productions with Josh Bolt, Sheila Hancock, Dean Andrews, and Barbara Flynn. It was chosen as one of Radio Times' 12 Christmas Cracker treats and has been screened for three Christmas seasons.
An adaptation of Back Home has been dramatised for television twice. The first one, starring Hayley Mills won the Gold Award at the New York Film and Television Festival in 1990. The screenplay was written by David Wood who adapted Goodnight Mister Tom as a straight play. In 2012 Goodnight Mister Tom opened in the West End and won an Olivier Award. David Wood has also been commissioned to adapt Back Home for the stageby Chichester Festival Theatre.
Michelle's new book will be published by Troika Books in November. Her editor Martin West was her editor for Goodnight Mister Tom. Set in 1959 it is called Impossible!