Brighton Rock at the Theatre Royal Brighton Review

6-10 March 2018


Reviewed by Sasha Nye

Last night I went to the Theatre Royal in Brighton to see what I can only describe as a riveting retelling of the classic Brighton Rock. Originally a novel by Graham Greene which was brought to life on the big screen in 1948 and starred the great Richard Attenborough.

This adaptation by Byrony Lavery was absolutely captivating. Brighton Rock is set in 1930’s Brighton and the clever costumes and set pieces took you right back to that era. The way they used the pier structure throughout was extremely clever.

Until this evening, not having read the novel or seen the film, I was unsure of what to expect. All I knew was the high expectations of a Brighton audience and the significance of the venue.

Brighton Rock 2018. Jacob James Beswick as Pinkie and Sarah Middleton as Rose
Photo credit Karl Andre Photography

Not knowing what to expect I was surprised to immediately be swept up in the plot and taken along the journey that the characters were travelling. It was a dark and suspenseful thriller that kept me engaged and on the edge of my seat until the end. The menacing and tormented characters captured the imagination of the audience. The triangle between the three main characters was exciting to watch and was executed perfectly. Gloria Onitiri was perfect as the headstrong, spirited and Forthright Ida Arnold. With Sarah Middleton playing the lovelorn, sweet Rose beautifully too. For me though Jacob James Beswick was the star of the show with his portrayal as Pinkie. Pinkie was played by the great Richard Attenborough in the film. Jacob James Beswick brought the tormented, dark and menacing character of Pinkie to live. Not only with his words but in his movements and body language too. He stole every scene he was in. A very talented cast with great direction by Esther Richardson.

The Theatre Royal was a great venue for this show. It is set right in the heart of Brighton town centre. Just a few minutes walking distance from both car parks and public transport. It is in my mind what you would call a traditional theatre with friendly staff, great decor and central location. A timeless and perfect venue.

If you want to be enthralled and kept on the edge of your seat by a dark and captivating thriller then Brighton Rock is the show for you.

Rating: 4/5

Tickets cost from £14.90 to £39.40 (plus £2.85 transaction fee).

Brighton Rock is at the Theatre Royal in Brighton from 6-10 March 2018, for more information or to book tickets visit or call the box office on 0844 871 7650.

Theatre Royal. New Road, Brighton, East Sussex, BN1 1SD | 0844 871 7650

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