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Educating Rita

Drama

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About Educating Rita

Lyric Theatre Belfast presents Educating Rita By Willy Russell

Directed by Emma Jordan; Starring Michael James Ford and Kerri Quinn

**** “Thought-provoking and multi-layered”
Irish Times

***** “Funny and poignant”
The Reviews Hub

**** “The perfect balance of humour and poignancy”
Belfast Live

“Kerri Quinn is a revelation”
 Irish News

“Michael James Ford is mood-perfect”
 Irish Independent

Following its record-breaking run at the Lyric Theatre Belfast in 2016, this re-imagined production of Willy Russell’s award-winning comedy embarks on a tour of Ireland in 2017 with its original cast Kerri Quinn (Rita) and Michael James Ford (Frank). The production will tour around the nation to 7 venues including The Gaiety Theatre this spring.

“They expect too much.  They walk into the hairdressers and expect to walk out an hour later as a different person.  I tell them, I’m just a hairdresser, not a plastic surgeon.  See, most of them, that’s why they come to the hairdressers - because they want to be changed.  But if you wanna change you have to do it from the inside don’t you?  Know like I’m doin’....tryin’ to do.  Do you think I will?  Think I’ll be able to do it?”

It’s 1980, and Susan ‘Rita’ White has decided it’s time for a change.

A wise-cracking, no-nonsense hairdresser from the working-class streets of Belfast, Rita is tired of her job, her prospects, her husband, her life.  She wants to be the sort of woman who knows the difference between Shaw’s Bridge and George Bernard Shaw, and so enrolls in an Open Learning course in English Literature where she meets her tutor Frank - a lecturer from North Down who teaches at Queen’s - and begins her journey of self-discovery.

Frank has his problems too.  Divorced, an alcoholic, and sick to the back teeth of the pretensions of academic life, Frank finds Rita’s enthusiasm for learning and down-to-earth attitude refreshing. Frank and Rita make an unlikely pair, but could they really show each other a way to a better future?

“Educating Rita has a nice balance between comedy and social depth. It’s got a lot of heart and soul to it." Emma Jordan , Director

**** “Emma Jordan directs with characteristically quiet ferocity”
 The Stage

“A fantastic production…both leads are extraordinary”
Culture NI