To Kill a Mockingbird Gielgud Theatre

To Kill a Mockingbird Review round-up at the Gielgud Theatre starring Rafe Spall ★★★★

Reviews are in for To Kill a Mockingbird at the Gielgud Theatre in London.

Starring Rafe Spall as Atticus Finch, this production is a West End transfer of the Tony award-winning Broadway play, adapted by Aaron Sorkin and directed by Bartlett Sher.

A mix of four and five stars reviews from all of the major UK theatre critics mark this as a smash-hit, and unsurprising given the quality casting and the show’s pedigree from the US, where it won rave reviews from critics and audiences, plus nine Tony nominations.

The show has set design by Miriam Buether, costume design by Ann Roth, sound design by Scott Lehrer, lighting by Jennifer Tipton, and an original score by Adam Guettel.

Alongside Rafe Spall in the cast are Harry Attwell (Mr Cunningham/Boo Radley), Amanda Boxer (Mrs Henry Dubose), Poppy Lee Friar (Mayella Ewell), John Hastings (Bailiff), Simon Hepworth (Mr Roscoe/Dr Reynolds), Laura Howard (Miss Stephanie/Dill’s Mother), Lloyd Hutchinson (Link Deas), Gwyneth Keyworth (Scout Finch), Tom Mannion (Sheriff Heck Tate), David Moorst (Dill Harris), Pamela Nomvete (Calpurnia), Jim Norton (Judge Taylor), Patrick O’Kane (Bob Ewell), Jude Owusu (Tom Robinson), Harry Redding (Jem Finch), David Sturzaker (Horace Gilmer) and Natasha Williams (Mrs Dubose’s Maid). The cast will be completed by ensemble members Helen Belbin, Laurence Belcher, Paul Birchard, Ryan Ellsworth, Rebecca Hayes, Danny Hetherington, Matthew Jure, Anna Munden and Itoya Osagiede. 

Today, producers of the show also announced that To Kill a Mockingbird is extending its run at the Gielgud Theatre, until 19 November 2022.

Book tickets to To Kill a Mockingbird at the Gielgud Theatre, London.

Check out reviews from all of the major UK press, including the Evening Standard, Guardian, Telegraph and Times.

Average Critics Rating

To Kill A Mockingbird reviews

The Guardian

"Harper Lee would approve of snappy Sorkin update"

"Rafe Spall is a dignified Atticus Finch in Aaron Sorkin’s smooth and confident adaptation, which finds modern-day resonances in the 1960 classic about racial injustice in the American south"

"The drama of the courtroom, as a whole, is when this production comes most fully alive, the testimonies of both Bob and Mayella Ewell (Patrick O’Kane and Poppy Lee Friar respectively, both sensational) are filled with tension, anger, betrayal and disbelief. There are modern-day resonances of Trump’s left-behinds in their characterisations that feel utterly real and uncontrived; both father and daughter sneer at Atticus’s intellectual elitism and could be today’s forgotten populists of the rust-belt."

Arifa Akbar, The Guardian
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The Evening Standard

"All rise for this powerfully uplifting theatrical event"

"Rafe Spall brings a vitality to the role of Atticus Finch in Aaron Sorkin’s fresh adaption of Harper Lee’s classic novel"

"All rise for a magnificent Mockingbird. Sheer emotion and moral force make this Broadway adaptation of Harper Lee’s novel about race, community and family a powerfully uplifting theatrical event."

Nick Curtis, The Evening Standard
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The Telegraph

"Aaron Sorkin’s revelatory adaptation blazingly captures the zeitgeist"

"Harper Lee's famous 1960 novel comes rivetingly to life at the Gielgud Theatre, with Rafe Spall hypnotic as lawyer Atticus Finch"

"Watching it from the vantage of 2022, though, it’s clear that the piece is more than just classily cast (in this case, Rafe Spall takes the lead), well-wrought and boasting talking-point elements. It blazingly captures the zeitgeist, so that what remains firmly in period is also urgent, the furore about Floyd reinforcing its percipience."

Dominic Cavendish, The Telegraph
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The Times

"Rafe Spall is stunning in new take on classic"

"Hats off to Aaron Sorkin. While the official title may be Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, this captivating drama is very much Sorkin’s take on a story that has become embedded in the consciousness of generations of readers. "

"If Peck is stolidly heroic in the film, Spall gives us a more restless, folksier figure: think of a cross between a young James Stewart and the buttoned-up Kevin Costner in JFK. "

Clive Davis, The Times
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i News

"Rafe Spall plays the hero in a tremendous reimagining"

"Aaron Sorkin’s searing adaptation improves on Harper Lee’s novel where it matters the most"

"Most significantly, Sorkin expands the roles of African Americans Tom Robinson (Jude Owusu), the field hand falsely accused of rape, and Calpurnia (Pamela Nomvete), the Finches’ housekeeper.

Both actors are magnificent, challenging Spall’s warm, magnetic Atticus on his naive faith in his neighbours’ inherent goodness, and confronting the appalling reality with pain, rage and a control born of long, terrible endurance. Owusu’s tense, anguished testimony and Nomvete’s outraged agony, poured into a silent scream, are searingly memorable."

Sam Marlowe, i News
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The Sunday Times

"Aaron Sorkin supercharges To Kill a Mockingbird"

"At last, here’s a play with serious oomph — pity about Rafe Spall’s designer stubble"

"... here is a production of To Kill a Mockingbird (Gielgud Theatre, London W1) to restore some high-brow oomph to Shaftesbury Avenue. Harper Lee’s novel about race and rape injustice in 1930s Alabama has been given a fresh varnish by Aaron Sorkin, the screenwriter of, among others, The West Wing. It has a big cast and is skilfully staged."

Quentin Letts, The Sunday Times
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The Financial Times

"To Kill a Mockingbird — stirring drama celebrates and scrutinises Harper Lee’s novel"

"It’s in his exchanges with Calpurnia that this production finds its centre, as she challenges his assumptions. And it is in the neat overlaps between courtroom and theatre that it throws those challenges out to the audience"

Sarah Hemming, The Financial Times
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📷 Main photo: To Kill a Mockingbird - Gielgud Theatre

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