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We all have a story

Pamela Raith Photography

Run Rebel. Belgrade Theatre. From 21 – 25 March.

Review by Heidi Barber

Pilot theatre’s production of Manjeet Mann’s celebrated novel is a world premier adaptation and combines stunning visual effects with fast moving physical theatre.

In this case the ‘story’ revolves around the central character Amber (Jessica Kaur) who is struggling to cope with the confining rules set by her family and their expectations for her in life. Her outlet from this difficult home life is her local running track and it is only when she is running that she feels completely liberated and in control of her own destiny. As her body speeds up, the world slows down and the confusion and fear inside her head is replaced by more positive thoughts and ideas.

After being introduced to Amber’s abusive, alcoholic father and her downtrodden, unhappy mother, it feels like this is going to be an overwhelmingly tragic story but when an inspirational teacher sows the seeds in Amber’s mind that a revolution is possible, she begins to believe that her life could change for the better.

Pamela Raith Photography

Amber begins to teach her mother to read and write in English and other characters in Amber’s life show her that “it’s never too late to learn to love”. Surrounded by good friends and other family members, Amber and her mother eventually break free from their hopeless, constraining home life.

Jessica Kaur as Amber gives a powerful and convincing performance throughout and is supported by a strong, multi-rolling ensemble cast including Amber’s love interest David (Kiran Raywilliams). One of the many surprises and highlights of this show is that, when Amber experiences joy, she asks if she can repeat the sequence and it elicits cheers from the audience towards the end when she finally gets to kiss David.

With strong and emotional storytelling, this is a thought provoking, vibrant and uplifting production which is not to be missed.


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