West End stars announced to return for the UK tour of ‘The Kite Runner’

David Ahmad is back in the central role of Amir joined by Andrei Costin, Lisa Zahra and Bhavin Bhatt as bad boy Assef, a role that saw him named “Best Newcomer” in the Asian Media Awards

Several stars from the West End season of ‘The Kite Runner’ are confirmed to headline the 2020 UK tour.

The Kite Runner, an unforgettable theatrical tour-de-force, is to tour the UK in 2020 following two acclaimed West End seasons, when it played to over 100,000 people and received standing ovations at every single performance. It will also premiere in Dubai at the 2,000-seat Dubai Opera.

David Ahmad returns to the central role of Amir, with Andrei Costin as Hassan and Sohrab, Lisa Zahra as Soraya and Bhavin Bhatt as bad boy Assef, a role that led to him being named “Best Newcomer” at the Asian Media Awards.
The cast is completed by Tiran Aakel, Ian Abeyesekera, Adam Samuel Bal, Christopher Glover, Rhian Mclean, Dean Rehman, Stuart Vincent, Stanton Wright with Hanif Khan as the onstage Tabla Player.
Creative team: Director Giles Croft, Designer Barney George, Lighting Designer Charles Balfour, Projection Designer William Simpson, Composer and Musical Director Jonathan Girling, Sound Designer Drew Baumohl, Movement Director KItty Winter, Fight Director Philip D’Orléans.

It will tour to 16 cities and towns across the UK, starting at Aylesbury’s Waterside Theatre (21 – 22 February) then Dubai Opera, 27 – 29 February, Theatre Clywd, Mold (5 – 7 March), Richmond Theatre (10 – 14 March), Salisbury Playhouse (17 – 21 March), Leeds Playhouse (31 March – 4 April), Lowry, Salford (7 – 11 April), Churchill Theatre, Bromley (14 – 18 April), Wolverhampton Grand Theatre (21 – 25 April), Eastbourne Devonshire Theatre (28 April – 2 May), Plymouth Theatre Royal (4 – 9 May), Darlington Hippodrome (12 – 16 May), Cardiff New Theatre (19 – 23rd May), Inverness Eden Court (26 – 30 May), Woking New Victoria Theatre (2 – 6 June), Oxford Playhouse (9 – 13 June), Southampton Nuffield Theatre (16 – 19 June), Leicester Curve Theatre (22 – 27 June), Sheffield Lyceum (30 June – 4 July).

LONDON PRESS NIGHT: Richmond Theatre – Tuesday 10 March at 7.30pm

Andrei Costin and David Ahmad (above and left) David Ahmad and Lisa Zahra (below) Photos by Irina Chira

Based on Khaled Hosseini’s international best-selling novel, this powerful story has been adapted into a stunning stage production. A haunting tale of friendship which spans cultures and continents, it follows one man’s journey to confront his past and find redemption.

Afghanistan is a divided country on the verge of war and two childhood friends are about to be torn apart. It’s a beautiful afternoon in Kabul and the skies are full of the excitement and joy of a kite flying tournament. But neither Hassan or Amir can foresee the terrible incident which will shatter their lives forever…

The Kite Runner, published in 2003, was Khaled Hosseini’s first novel. It became an instant bestseller across the globe and has since been published in 70 countries, selling 31.5 million copies in 60 languages.

The Kite Runner is adapted for the stage by Matthew Spangler and directed by Giles Croft. Produced by Martin Dodd for UK Productions and Derek Nicol & Paul Walden for Flying Entertainment.

It was originally produced by Nottingham Playhouse and Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse. Giles Croft, who was artistic director at Nottingham Playhouse for 18 years and directed more than 50 productions there, rates The Kite Runner as a soaring highlight of his career. “The response is always extraordinarily powerful and we are fortunate to get standing ovations at every performance, with audiences connecting deeply and emotionally with the characters and the story.” It is, Giles strongly believes, a story with universal resonance. “It speaks to all people through the core themes of guilt, forgiveness and redemption. Those are things that we all have some connection with. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you are, it will speak to you.”

Matthew Spangler adds that the play covers many universal themes: a father and son relationship, friendship, love, global politics, refugees, forgiveness and redemption. “A more conventional play might just choose one of those themes, but in The Kite Runner all the themes kind of swim around each other. There’s always something new happening on stage and something new to think about. It’s a very sad but hopeful and moving story. Maybe people will leave with a greater understanding of the themes and it’s great if they do, but at the very basic level it’s a piece of storytelling and emotion.”

Bhavin Bhatt is crowned Best Newcomer for ‘The KIte Runner’ at the Asian Media Awards

Aylesbury Waterside Theatre 21 – 22 February
Dubai Dubai Opera 27 – 29 February
Mold Theatre Clywd 5 – 7 March
LONDON DATE: Richmond Richmond Theatre 10 – 14 March (Press night Tuesday 10 March at 7.30pm)
Salisbury Salisbury Playhouse 17 – 21 March
Leeds Leeds Playhouse 31 March – 4 April
Salford The Lowry 7 – 11 April
Bromley Churchill Theatre 14 – 18 April
Wolverhampton Grand Theatre 21 – 25 April
Eastbourne Devonshire Theatre 28 April – 2 May
Plymouth Theatre Royal 4 – 9 May
Darlington Hippodrome 12 – 16 May
Cardiff New Theatre 19 – 23 May
Inverness Eden Court 26 – 30 May
Woking New Victoria Theatre 2 – 6 June
Oxford Oxford Playhouse 9 – 13 June
Southampton Nuffield Theatre 16 – 19 June
Leicester Curve Theatre 22 – 27 June
Sheffield Lyceum 30 June – 4 July

Social Media
Twitter: @TheKiteRunnerUK
Facebook: thekiterunneruk