Run, Rebel review – issues-led adaptation of Manjeet Mann’s YA novel | Theatre

Operate, Rebel is the closing generation in a four-12 months job that has witnessed diversifications of award-profitable novels by Malorie Blackman (Noughts and Crosses), Alex Wheatle (Crongton Knights) and Zana Fraillon (The Bone Sparrow). “The aim has been to encourage an enlargement and diversification of the selection of perform that is made and programmed for younger grown ups and secondary-college age kids,” claims Esther Richardson, inventive director of Pilot Theatre (a single of five organizations that make up the consortium of producers: the other individuals are Mercury theatre, Colchester Belgrade theatre, Coventry Derby theatre and York Theatre Royal). These is effective supply “narratives that are fresher and may possibly feel a lot more promptly appropriate and relatable to their lives, than existing set and ‘classic’ texts”.

Fifteen-12 months-previous Amber (Jessica Kaur) life with her non-English-talking moms and dads on what she describes as “one of the roughest and biggest estates in the country”. Her violent, alcoholic father is identified that she will not provide dishonour on the loved ones (Amber’s elder sister has presently been pressured into an organized relationship). His community of friends is fast to advise him if she dares an after-university check out to McDonald’s with classmate Tara and nascent enjoy fascination David (outstanding experienced debut from Kiran Raywilliams). University offers hope: encouraging Amber’s abilities as a runner inspiring her, through heritage classes on revolution, to rebel.

Manjeet Mann, working with director Tessa Walker, has herself tailored her much-praised 2020 verse novel. The final result arrives throughout as not so a great deal a dramatisation of Amber’s tale, much more a demonstration of problems influencing her. These include: bullying deprivation domestic abuse friendship and interactions revolution and rise up females and activity (outlined in the “Resources” section of the play’s text). Some vivid theatrical moments enliven an overlong output (a race run “uphill” on Debbie Duru’s curved set, for instance) and a 5-robust ensemble ably supports Kaur, who is rigorous and partaking in the central job.

Run, Rebel is at Belgrade theatre, Coventry, 21-25 March