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Review: Hard Times, Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, Wednesday, May 16

PUBLISHED: 10:42 21 May 2018 | UPDATED: 08:10 22 May 2018

Hard Times, by Northern Broadsides at Bury Theatre Royal. Photo: Northern Broadsides

Hard Times, by Northern Broadsides at Bury Theatre Royal. Photo: Northern Broadsides

Archant

Hats off to Northern Broadsides.

For this is a stupendous adaptation and an absolute gem of a production of Charles Dickens’ gnarly and witty drama.

From the beginning you are mesmerised by the professionalism of the cast of 10 who double up with a variety of instruments and percussion.

The story centres round the trials and tribulations of the people of Coketown from the self made businessman, mill and bank owner Josiah Bounderby, wonderfully played by Howard Chadwick, to his weaver and loyal worker Stephen Blackpool (Anthony Hunt) and the wealthy middle class gentleman of the town Thomas Grandgrind (Andrew Price) and his son and daughter Tom (Perry Moore) and Louisa (Vanessa Schofield).

But there is so much more to this tale of love, lust, theft, deception, devilment and drama.

You can throw in Sleary’s Circus as the dark satanic mills is interrupted by the colour and vibrancy of the grand ring.

Russell Cook

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