Based on Stephen King’s 1982 novella Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption, this thrilling stage production examines desperation, injustice, friendship and hope behind the claustrophobic bars of amaximum-security facility. The 1994 feature film, regularly voted Britain’s favourite ever movie, starred Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman and was nominated for seven Academy Awards.
Despite protests of his innocence, Andy Dufresne is handed a double life sentence for the brutal murder of his wife and her lover. Incarcerated at the notorious Shawshank facility, he quickly learns that no one can survive alone. Andy strikes up an unlikely friendship with the prison fixer Red, and things take a slight turn for the better. However, when Warden Stammas decides to bully Andy into subservience and exploit his talents for accountancy, a desperate plan is quietly hatched.
Paul Nicholls (Andy Dufresne) burst onto our screens two decades ago as teenage heart-throb Joe Wicks in the BBC’s EastEnders. Since then, Nicholls has barely been away from primetime TV drama, featuring most recently in the critically acclaimed The C-Word and Grantchester.
Ben Onwukwe (Red) boasts a 30-year stagecareer having played leading roles with The RSC and the Royal Court Theatre. Television credits include EastEnders, Coronation Street and eleven years as Recall McKenzie in London’s Burning.
Keeping them in line is Jack Ellis (Warden Stammas) who, in addition to his prestigious stage career, is best-known for his portrayal of villainous prison warden Jim Fenner in popular ITV drama Bad Girls, and as DI Tony Muddyman in Prime Suspect, where he starred alongside Dame Helen Mirren.
Photo includes previous cast.