The Kite Runner adapted by Matthew Spangler
Theatre Royal Bath
The much awaited stage adaptation of the bestselling novel by Khaled Hosseini has arrived in Bath following a hugely successful run in the West End.
The powerful tale of friendship which spans culture, continents and decades follows one man’s journey to confront his past and find redemption. The story is set against Afghanistan’s divisions as war is looming. Hassan and Amir are two childhood friends who lives are about to be torn apart. The captivating design by Barney George supported by the evocative and virtuosic live drumming on stage with tabla played by musician Hanif Khan, brings the beauty and brutality, the poverty and wealth of their world into sharp perspective.
Lead by David Ahmad (Amir) as narrator the characters spring to life. Amir who alongside his childhood friend Hassan (Jo Ben Ayed) grow up unaware of their connection but under the watchful eye of Baba (Emilio Doorgasingh) who appears to neglect his son Amir for Hassan which breeds jealously and contempt. The company work seamlessly together and the characters are drawn with great detail allowing their stories to leave an indelible mark on the soul.
The divide of wealth and poverty is never far away but clearly the bonds of friendship and family alongside the need for redemption far outweigh the risks that Amir may face as he grows into adulthood.
This is a beautifully constructed and understated production directed by Giles Croft and adapted by Mathew Spangler ensures the heart of the novel remains intact whilst bringing the story to a wider audience whose encounter with the central characters is unlikely to be forgotten in this meticulously crafted, visually stunning show.
**** – 4 Stars