The Giant Killers 5***** - One4Review
one4review | On 19, Aug 2017
Having had to run to the venue, and then discovering the show was on the top floor of the Rose Theatre, I sat down in the audience slightly out of sorts. Thankfully this crowd pleasing play was a real tonic and I quickly came absorbed in the lives of a group of Darwen locals who dared to challenge the accepted wisdom that Association Football was only for the landed gentry in the 1850s. With an enthusiastic mill owner’s son, an ambitious female club secretary and a mill worker who had developed association football skills in Glasgow, the town of Darwen took on ‘the toffs’ and competed for the FA Cup. This play was not just about football as the team was a shining beacon of hope for the north of England when the mill towns struggled with civil unrest as mills closed and unemployment was always around the corner.
The revolving scenery on stage is a clever touch and keeps the action moving along briskly. You don’t have to like football to appreciate this play as the social history of the period is fascinating and the inequality felt at home is equally reflected on the pitch. Come prepared to climb a lot of stairs, but believe me it’s worth the effort.
Reviewed by Rona
Gilded Balloon Rose Theatre
Until 28th August