Post-war setting for To Sir With Love

The Royal & Derngate Theatre
The Royal & Derngate Theatre

Award-winning actor Matthew Kelly is to star as the headmaster in a new stage version of E R Braithwaite’s To Sir, With Love.

The play will be staged at the Royal & Derngate in Northampton from Friday, September 6, until Saturday, September 28, before touring the country.

Based on Braithwaite’s autobiography and adapted by East Is East writer Ayub Khan Din, To Sir, With Love is the story of Ricky, an ex RAF fighter pilot, who arrives in London in 1948 and discovers the reality of life as a black man in post-war England.

Taking the only job he can get, Ricky begins his first teaching post, in a tough but progressive East End school run by the enlightened headmaster Florian.

The determined new teacher, supported by his headmaster, turns teenage rebelliousness into self respect, contempt into consideration and hate into love and, on the way, Ricky learns he has more in common with his students than he realised.

Matthew Kelly plays Florian, a character based on Alex Bloom, the revolutionary headteacher of St George’s Secondary School in Stepney, which employed the real life E R Braithwaite.

Tickets cost from £13 to £28. Family tickets also available. Ring 01604 624811.