The Kite Runner | A Review

The Kite Runner, a (fictional) book that I first read in college for my AS Level English and Literature Exam. It wasn't a farce to read as I really enjoyed the story... and although we were meant to give the book back at the end of the year.. I didn't (shh.) It's still on my bookcase now! When I heard that the production was coming to The Lowry this October I knew I had to see it.. and I'm so glad I did. 

Let me give you a short summary of the story if you aren't familiar. Amir, a well-to-do Pashtun boy, and Hassan, a Hazara who is the son of Ali, Amir's father's servant, spend their days kite fighting in the hitherto peaceful city of Kabul. When a horrific event happens it causes Amir and Hassan to drift apart before the Soviet Union military intervenes in Afghanistan and Amir and his father flee to Pakistan before becoming refugees in San Francisco. As Amir grows up he has continued guilt  about Hassan and the event that he could have prevented. After Amir's father dies of cancer he received a message from an old friend from Kabul and goes to visit him in Pakistan. When some revealing information is given to him Amir goes on the hunt for Hassan's son and ultimately has to save his life.  

The play begins with an amazing musician who plays the music for all the scenes and sits proudly on the side of the stage. Amir dips in and out of present time while narrating his story of his childhood to the audience. The story portray a range of emotion from happiness, jealousy, guilt, anger, grief and sadness. In fact I left the theatre with a slight headache from all the facial expressions I think I made during the play, I physically noticed myself raising my eyebrows at surprising moments, squinting at the bullies and rolling my eyes. 

I have enjoyed many plays, but none moved me as much as The Kite Runner, it had been a few (ahem) years since my last read and so I wasn't totally fresh with the story in my mind meaning I was shocked and saddened by events all over again. Amir wept, and I held back the tears. It was hard to watch at times but also you couldn't look away, and that's the best kind of acting. There was not one stumble or mistake that took you out of the immersiveness of the story. It really felt as if you were watching a movie rather than a live action which sounds devoid but I think it's because I was so drawn into the story. I've never heard an audience so silent the whole time, no chattering in the back and hardly any of that chain coughing you always seem to get when a venue goes quiet.

Overall, I think this is the best put together, moving, stage show I have ever seen and I urge you to go and see it! It's been two days since I saw it and I'm still thinking about it which I think shows how deeply I felt for the story. Absolute 10 out of 5 stars from me! 

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