Based on the ground-breaking crime drama that captivated over 15 million viewers each week in the 1990s; Band of Gold has been turned into a stage play by its creator Kay Mellor who also directs the production.

Set in the 1990s this thriller revolves around a group of women, Carol, Rose, Anita and Gina as they battle to survive working in a notorious red-light district “the lane” in Bradford. It touches on some of the reasons why women decide to become sex workers such as mental health issues, debt, and poverty.

Several short scenes, a minimalist set and effective lighting, combine perfectly to create an immersive fast-moving piece of theatre. The viewer is quickly and easily transported from various locations drawing them into the heart of the production.

There are exceptional strong performances throughout this piece from one of the most talented casts I have seen in a touring producing for quite some time. As soon as the production began I was captivated by these characters and their stories.

Virginia Byron gives a sensitive portrayal of Anita, a woman desperately hoping for a permanent relationship instead of being the mistress of a local businessman. Sacha Parkinson was very convincing as Gina a woman struggling to make ends meet as she tries to escape from her violent husband Steve played by the impressive Kieron Richardson. Emma Osman gave an excellent performance as Carol a woman trying to give her daughter a better life. Gaynor Faye gave an outstanding performance as ‘top girl of the lane’ Rose, as she displays an inner softness deeply hidden behind a very tough exterior.

Peppered with moments of dark humour and emotion, Band of Gold is a gritty, realistic, captivating drama that resulted in a thrilling evening of entertainment.

Band of Gold is at the Alexandra Theatre Birmingham from the 10th -15th February 2020.

MT

Theatretastic 4/5:

We say: “Band of Gold is a gritty, realistic, captivating drama packed full of powerhouse performances!”