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Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Thursday 16 January 2020

Crongton Knights: Award-Winning Young Adult Novel Brought To The Stage @ Theatre Royal Brighton

Following their critically acclaimed adaptation of Malorie Blackman's novel Noughts and Crosses , Pilot Theatre will, at Theatre Royal Brighton, stage Emteaz Hussain's new adaptation of Alex Wheatle's award winning young adult novel – Crongton Knights.

Life isn't easy on the Crongton Estate and for McKay and his mates it's all about keeping their heads down but when a friend finds herself in trouble, they set out on a mission that goes further than any of them imagined. 

Crongton Knights will take the Brighton audience on a night of madcap adventure as McKay and his friends 'The Magnificent Six' encounter the dangers and triumphs of a mission gone awry. 

Alex Wheatle said about the new stage adaptation:

"It's a modern quest story where on their journey, the young diverse lead characters have to confront debt, poverty, blackmail, loss, fear, the trauma of a flight from a foreign land and the omnipresent threat of gangland violence. 

"The dialogue I created for this award winning novel deserves a platform and I for one can't wait to see the characters that have lived in my head for a number of years, leap out of my mind and onto (the) stage." 


In this world premiere adaptation of Alex's award winning novel, the pulse of the city is alive on stage with a soundscape of beatboxing and vocals laid down by the cast and created by acclaimed musician, Conrad Murray.

The play is about the friends you'll never forget and how lessons learned the hard way can bring you closer together. 

Born in London to Jamaican parents, Alex Wheatle's first book, Brixton Rock , told the story of a 16 year old boy of mixed race, in 1980s Brixton. 

Its sequel, Brenton Brown, was published in 2011. His other novels include East of Acre Lane (2001). A prequel, Island Songs, set in Jamaica, was published in 2005, and a sequel, Dirty South, in 2008. 

In 2010, he wrote and toured the one-man autobiographical performance, Uprising

Alex was awarded an MBE for services to literature in 2008.

Crongton Knights will be the second of four co-productions between Pilot Theatre, Derby Theatre, Belgrade Theatre Coventry and York Theatre Royal who last year formed – with the Mercury Theatre Colchester - a new partnership to develop theatre for younger audiences. 

From now until 2022 the consortium will commission and co-produce an original mid-scale production each year.

Crongton Knights will be at Theatre Royal Brighton from Wednesday 4th – Saturday 7th March 2020. CLICK HERE for tickets.

by: Mike Cobley




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