Shawshank Redemption- Theatre Review

Shawshank program

I went to see The Shawshank Redemption at the Theatre Royal Windsor on Tuesday 18th August for the opening night of their UK tour. The big question on everyone’s mind was how are they going to do this as a stage show. Most people have seen the film and will tell you how brilliant it was and how well acted, which puts a lot of pressure on this show to make it a good one.

So we arrived and the Theatre was completely packed out, of course it would be who wouldn’t want to see it. The show started with the curtains already open to reveal the set which immediately set the atmosphere for the audience. The play was produced by Bill Kenwright, for those of you that don’t know who he is, he has also produced huge amounts of other fantastic shows.

The 2 main characters gave a sterling performance- Red – played by Patrick Robinson was a joy from the start, he opened the play and narrated throughout. His voice was strong and powerful drawing the audience in to listen to every word he had to say. He portrayed the character perfectly, very likeable, known as ‘the man who could get stuff’ he was charming, witty and you grew to really like and want the best for him.

Andy Dufrense played by Ian Kelsey was another strong performer who engaged with the audience very well, his take on the role was superb. He had a lot of fight in him and showed that in his performance throughout, Andy Dufrense was never going to give up. He had a lot of hope and inspired the other inmates to do things they never normally would have succeeded. Ian drew us all in, taking us on his journey with him and willing him along the way hoping that he would be fairly freed from Shawshank.

This really is a must see show, if you enjoy the film which I’m sure you all do, then you will love this exquisite piece of theatre, it is currently on at the Theatre Royal Windsor for 2 weeks until 29th August. Then is is touring throughout the UK.

Shawshank Tour dates

One more person I would like to mention is- Owen O’Neill, he played the role of Warden Stammas, who is such a cunning and conniving person. One minute you think he is being nice then the next he turns into a selfish and evil man.

I’m sure Owen is actually a really nice man but he played the Warden so well that you wanted to scream at how vile he was being. So well done, he really brought that character to life to portray him in the right manner.

We thoroughly enjoyed the show and so did the rest of the packed theatre. It was such a well put together production which I’m sure took a lot of people to help make it happen. Well done to the cast, crew and creatives for this exceptional show and break a leg for the rest of the tour.

Me and dad Shawshank

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Love Annie x

Annie Quinn

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