Rugby Theatre's next production is hot topic after MP triggers national debate on death penalty
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The Thrill of Love runs at the theatre from March 4-11 and tells of Ruth Ellis, the last woman to be hanged in Great Britain.
It’s a powerful drama anyway but following comments by MP Lee Anderson that he supported the return of the death penalty - made before he was named vice-chairman of the Conservative Party last week - the production has even greater relevance.
The play re-examines the circumstances of a story that led to a conviction for murder and the passing of the death penalty.
Director Wendy Kay told the Advertiser about what led her to bring a production to the Henry Street venue.
She said: “I first came across The Thrill of Love script back in 2019 - having seen the production that year - and was totally transfixed by the honest story-telling of Ruth Ellis’s complex life, one hidden behind the sensationalist headlines of the time.
"I was planning to to pitch the show here at Rugby Theatre for our Autumn 2020 programme - as a newly trained RT director - however as we know, nothing in 2020 went to plan.
"So, this show has been a few years in the making and is finally about to make its debut on our Rugby Theatre stage this March.
"The Thrill of Love seeks to gives us a more balanced if not visceral portrait of a complex woman, treated badly by men and potentially wronged by a system that dealt her a heartbreaking, controversial conviction.
"And as we can see, the return of the debate about the death penalty shows how relevant Ruth's story still is today.”
The production will be on each evening of the run, except Sunday, at 7.30pm.
To mark International Women’s Day, all tickets for the performance on Wednesday, March 8, will be £10 – with no concessions on offer.
Details of how to book tickets for any of the shows are available on the Rugby Theatre website.