Directed by Pilot Theatre Artistic Director Esther Richardson with music composed by Hannah Peel, Brighton Rock will open at York Theatre Royal February 16, 2018, and then tour through May 26.
Brighton Rock concerns two 17-year-olds, Pinkie and Rose, “who get embroiled in a vicious gang war in Brighton where one brutal murder leads to the next. The police are impassive—but the courageous and life-embracing Ida Arnold wants the truth. Nothing scares her. Whatever the cost, she'll see justice is done.”
Written in 1938, Greene's classic novel was first adapted for the stage at the Garrick Theatre with Richard Attenborough playing Pinkie, a role he resumed in the 1947 film. In 2010 Greene’s novel was remade, setting it in 1964, with Sam Riley, Andrea Riseborough, and Helen Mirren. In 1993 Vicky Featherstone directed David Hurlock’s stage adaptation of the novel at West Yorkshire Playhouse, and in 2004 John Barry and Don Black wrote a musical version that ran at the Almeida Theatre.
In a statement Lavery said, “Why adapt Brighton Rock for the stage? Because it is such a treasure chest of narrative delights. It has got everything...It's a love story, a revenge tragedy, a small-town murder mystery, an array of small-time gangsters and a middle-aged woman who knows no fear and who will stop at nothing to do right. In the poisoned relationship between Pinkie and Rose, there is one of the best accounts ever of what it is like to be 16 and 17 years old in a terrible, violent, adolescence.”
Composer Peel, who will perform in the production during the opening run at the York Theatre Royal, added, “The menacing aspects to the 1930's story are even more resonant today so I am really excited about working with Pilot Theatre for this incredible stage version of Brighton Rock. With an even greater sense of darkness in the current world climate, my mind is already buzzing from the amount of music and sonic possibilities we will be bringing live to the stage.“
Brighton Rock is designed by Sara Perks. Casting will be announced in the coming weeks.
The tour will also play Brighton, Colchester, Hull, Cheltenham, Winchester, Watford, Birmingham, Newcastle, Mold, Derby, and Salford.