This stage version of the 1972 Perry Henzell reggae film musical was originally staged at Stratford East in April 2006, then revived there in February 2007. It subsequently came to London's Barbican Theatre as part of BITE08 in March 2008. The stage version was also written by Perry Henzell, but he died in between the first and second runs of the show. It is jointly directed by Stratford East's artistic director Kerry Michael and Dawn Reid. The musical tells the story of a country boy Ivan (Rolan Bell), who makes for the bright lights of Kingston, Jamaica. With a head full of songs, including "You Can Get It If You Really Want," "Many Rivers to Cross," "Higher and Higher," "Rivers of Babylon" and "The Harder They Come," he dreams of becoming a reggae star. When the harsh reality of the music scene drives him into a fast and furious life as an outlaw, he would rather die than kill his dream.
The cast also includes Jacqui Dubois, Derek Elroy, Victor Romero Evans, Joanna Francis, Matthew J Henry, Marlon King, Susan Lawson-Reynolds, Joy Mack, Marcus Powell, Joe Speare and Chris Tummings.
Tickets, with the unusually low West End price scale of £10-£32.50, are available by calling the box office at 08700 606 642 or by visiting www.theambassadors.com/playhouse.