To Kill a Mockingbird, Theatre Royal, Norwich. September 2014.
I ran out of time to see this at the Open Air Theatre both last summer and this so I was very pleased to read it was coming to Norwich and that some colleagues were as keen as me to see it.
From the moment the actors appeared on the stage to the moment the curtain fell I was transfixed and I was living in 1930s America with the cast.
Rather than turning the book into a straight play and adding too much new dialogue to a classic story the cast read from the novel and various scenes are then acted out, I'm not familiar enough with the text to know if this was the original dialogue but for me it worked absolutely.
The big courtroom scene blew me away totally and even though I knew how it ended I was swept away totally and really couldn't believe that a anyone would have reached the verdict reached. I loved the playing of the scene to the audience as well, making us the jury worked brilliantly.
The whole production was incredibly strong, with a very small part of me finding the young actor playing Jem to be a little weaker than the rest but apart from that the staging, the music and the who thing were just fantastic.
By the end I had a definite lump in my throat (as did my companions) and this play has jumped right up towards the tops of my favourite plays of the year.