Derby Theatre’s autumn season has started on a real high with this five-star production of Brassed Off.
The latest in-house offering from artistic director Sarah Brigham and her talented team is Paul Allen’s adaptation of Mark Herman’s popular 1996 movie.
And, just like its cinematic parent, Brassed Off, the stage version, is a potent mix.
Herman’s movie was a shout of anger against uncaring governments, but the often bleak message was sweetened by turning the focus on the band affiliated to the fictional Grimley Colliery, facing closure in the mid-90s, looking at a pit village still struggling with the aftermath of the 1984-85 Miners’ Strike.
Here, the production is helped immeasurably by the regular presence onstage of Belper-based Championship section Derwent Brass, fully integrated into the proceedings and giving a touch of brass class to the play.
In an impressive ensemble cast, Garry Cooper shines as ailing conductor Danny, who stubbornly believes music can help bring his suffering community together and there is also a strong showing from Jimmy Fairhurst as Phil as his hapless son Phil, with the constantly collapsing trombone.
Brassed Off packs a punch. But it also offers wonderfully played music, drama, lots of laughs and something to make you think. What more could you ask for from a night out at the theatre. Superb.
Brassed Off is at Derby Theatre until October 10. Call 01332 593939.