Tony Blair’s Lieutenants on Trial at London’s Tricycle Theatre

News   Tony Blair’s Lieutenants on Trial at London’s Tricycle Theatre
The Tricycle Theatre in London’s Kilburn has built a tradition of powerful stage adaptations of public enquiries. Director Nicholas Kent (also the Tricycle’s artistic director) and writer Richard Norton-Tailor have previously teamed up for recreations of the Nuremberg Nazi war crimes trials, and investigations into British political flashpoints including the murder of black teacher Stephen Lawrence, Srebrenica and arms trading with Iraq.

    Their latest gavel-rapper is the very current Hutton Enquiry into the death of weapons inspector Dr. David Kelly – and the related press allegations (for which Kelly was a source) that Tony Blair’s government “sexed up” a dossier which outlined reasons for the recent war on Iraq.

Justifying War – Scenes From The Hutton Enquiry opens on Nov. 4 and reunites many cast members from the previous shows. Prominent figures to be depicted include Blair’s former press chief Alistair Campbell, former defence minister Geoff Hoon, Lord Hutton himself and the BBC journalist at the eye of the storm, Andrew Gilligan.

Blair himself is not seen, as, Kent told Playbill On-Line, “If we included Blair it would become a different kind of show, more to do with impersonations. Blair’s evidence didn’t add that much and bringing him onto the stage would unbalance the play.”. Since the real enquiry was not allowed to be broadcast, Kent believes that the adaptation provides a public service, allowing more people to see the essence of the case.

The adaptation, by journalist Richard Norton-Tailor, uses only actual quotations from the enquiry transcripts. The investigation itself has still not been concluded, so the show does not reach a verdict, merely ending with the evidence given by Kelly’s widow. At least three nights a week the audience will be invited to stay for a discussion afterwards.

For ticket information call (0) 207-328-1000.

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