Painting a picture of the art world’s surprise package

The Pitmen Painters''Photo by Keith Pattison
The Pitmen Painters''Photo by Keith Pattison

Lee Hall’s acclaimed play The Pitmen Painters is to be performed at Derby Theatre from May 28-June 1.

Inspired by a book by William Feaver and directed by Max Robert, the play was originally produced by Newcastle’s acclaimed Live Theatre, and has enjoyed National Theatre, West End and Broadway sellout seasons.

Written by Lee Hall, creator of the worldwide sensation Billy Elliot, The Pitmen Painters has received huge critical acclaim and won the Evening Standard award for Best New Play.

In 1934, a group of Ashington miners hired a professor to teach an art appreciation evening class.

Rapidly abandoning theory in favour of practice, the pitmen began to paint.

Within a few years, the most avantgarde artists became their friends and their work was acquired by prestigious collections; but every day they worked, as before, down the mine. Examining the lives of a group of ordinary men who do extraordinary things, The Pitmen Painters is a humorous, deeply moving and timely look at art, class and politics.

The play is coming to Derby Theatre for a short stay as part of its UK tour.

Tickets cost £10-£25. Call the box office at Derby Theatre on 01332 593939.