LEE HALL wrote the screenplay for mining drama Billy Ellliot and returned to the coalface to pen The Pitmen Painters which opens at The Grand Theatre on Monday 22 August.
"The Pitmen Painters is a humorous, deeply moving and timely look at art, class and politics."
Originally produced by Newcastle’s acclaimed Live Theatre, and following sell-out seasons at the National Theatre and on Broadway this gritty tale of miners finding their artistic streak won the Evening Standard award for Best New Play.
The story begins in 1934, when a group of Ashington miners hire a professor to teach an art appreciation evening class, but rapidly abandoning theory in favour of practice, the pitmen began to paint.
Within a few years the most avant-garde artists become their friends and their work is acquired by prestigious collections, but every day they work, as before, down the mine.
The play examines the lives of a group of ordinary men that do extraordinary things. The Pitmen Painters is a humorous, deeply moving and timely look at art, class and politics.
Hall adapted Billy Elliott for the West End in 2005, winning an Olivier Award for Best New Musical, and it opened on Broadway in November 2008. His plays also include Spoonface Steinberg (Ambassadors), Cooking with Elvis (Live Theatre, Assembly Rooms and West End), and an adaptation of Herman Heijerman’s The Good Hope for the NT.
The cast features many of the original actors who starred in the original National Theatre and Broadway productions;, Deka Walmsley, David Whitaker, Brian Lonsdale, Michael Hodgson and Trevor Fox are joined by new cast members David Leonard, Joy Brook and Viktoria Kay.
The Pitmen Painters runs until Saturday 27 August and tickets are can booked via the Box Office on 0844 848 2706 or at www.leedsgrandtheatre.com