BAFTA winning playwright Roy Williams has given life to Allan Sillitoe's The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (1959) with an on-stage adaptation. Williams' production, which tours until 24 November, is said to unlock the biting realism of the Sillitoe's text within a contemporary framework.
The plot focuses on the inner dialogue of a young runner, Colin, as he trains for a cross-country race. Contrary to Sillitoe's novel, in which the protagonist is imprisoned for robbing a bakery, Williams' adaptation is set against the aftermath of last year's Tottenham riots.
To add to its contemporary edge, the character's thoughts are expressed whilst on a treadmill, with Colin covering 5k. The play has received favourable reviews, with the Guardian describing it as, 'an adrenaline rush of abstract thoughts pumping through the mind of the runner throughout the course of a race.'
The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner starts this evening (Tuesday 23 October) at the Nottingham Playhouse and runs until 27 October, and will show at the Liverpool Playhouse from 30 October to 3 November and Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield from 21 November to 24 November. For more information and further tour dates, visit the event website.