Small Island

BUY TICKETS 7pm Thursday 27 June

PLAY broadcast AS LIVE from the National Theatre (recorded in front of a live audience)

Andrea Levy’s Orange Prize-winning novel Small Island comes to life in an epic new theatre adaptation, filmed live on stage as part of National Theatre Live’s 10th birthday.

Small Island embarks on a journey from Jamaica to Britain, through the Second World War to 1948 – the year the HMT Empire Windrush docked at Tilbury. The play follows three intricately connected stories. Hortense yearns for a new life away from rural Jamaica, Gilbert dreams of becoming a lawyer, and Queenie longs to escape her Lincolnshire roots. Hope and humanity meet stubborn reality as the play traces the tangled history of Jamaica and the UK.

A company of 40 actors take to the stage of the National Theatre in this timely and moving story.

Adaptor Helen Edmundson and director Rufus Norris have honoured [Andrea Levy’s] intentions wonderfully in this all-encompassing and absorbing production. They precisely catch the balance in the book between the scale and scope of Levy’s concerns about the treatment of Britain’s black citizens from Jamaica and the West Indies, who served the motherland faithfully in the Second World War and were rewarded for their pains with contempt, and the sheer velocity of her story-telling. This is a show that shoots arrows of empathy and engagement out towards its audience and they respond.  Sarah Crompton, What’s On Stage  

Tickets: Full £20   Adult concessions £18   19-30 £15   18 & under £10
Running time: 3 hrs 20 mins (inc one interval)
Doors open: 6.30pm
Certificate: This screening is certified 15. Contains strong language and themes that some people may find distressing.

Official website