An Inspector Calls UK Tour 2023 | Review

An Inspector Calls UK Tour 2023 | Review

“An Inspector Calls” by JB Priestly is a timeless classic that has been performed on stages worldwide, to audiences young and old. The play has received critical acclaim for its ability to explore themes that are just as relevant today as when it was first written in 1945. The themes of social justice, responsibility, and accountability also make it the perfect GCSE text (it was in fact one of mine) albeit this use in the school curriculum was a good and a bad thing for me last night which I’ll explain later.

An Inspector Calls tour 2023

The play has been adapted for the stage by many directors over the years, and this  30th Anniversary UK and Ireland tour of the National Theatre’s acclaimed production of JB Priestley’s An Inspector Calls is directed by Stephen Daldry,

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In the 30-years since its first performance at the National Theatre in 1992,  An Inspector Calls has won a total of 19 major awards, including four Tony Awards and three Olivier Awards, and has played to more than 5 million theatregoers worldwide. An Inspector Calls is the most internationally-lauded production in the National Theatre’s history.

The stellar cast that performed at Liverpool last night, including Liam Brennan as Inspector Goole, Christine Kavanagh as Mrs. Birling, Jeffrey Harmer as Mr. Birling, Simon Cotton as Gerald Croft, Chloe Orrock as Sheila Birling, George Rowlands as Eric Birling and Frances Campbell as Edna; the cast were all, without exception, excellent.

The play is known for its strong characters and gripping storyline. The Birling family’s secrets and hidden motives are slowly revealed as Inspector Goole’s questioning brings their actions into question. The play also features a strong message about social responsibility and the interconnectedness of our actions.

An Inspector Calls UK Tour 2023 | Review
A scene from An Inspector Calls by J.B. Priestley @ Churchill, Bromley. Directed by Stephen Daldry. (Taken 05-09-19) ©Tristram Kenton 09/19

The audience was provided with a unique perspective of the play as we were able to witness the family’s gathering both from outside and inside the dining room walls. Throughout the performance, the actors skillfully utilised the stage, moving about and adjusting the scenery to suit their needs. A stairwell was moved to the center of the stage, allowing the performers to easily transition between the dining room and the other areas of the house. The house is also used to great effect towards the end of the play and I loved the unexpectedness of the movement.

Reviews of An Inspector Calls on its UK tour have been positive. Critics have praised the production’s set design, lighting, and performances. Many have highlighted the play’s continued relevance and power to engage audiences today. The play has also been commended for its ability to create tension and suspense, keeping audiences on the edge of their seats. I’d agree with all of that.

My only bug bear of the showing of An Inspector Calls tour 2023 last night (which I feel conflicted about) was the huge number of GCSE students in the audience that had come to watch the play together, who at times made the performance unlistenable to. The rustling and the chatter and the use of phones was frustrating, but in the same breath I’m delighted that they had come in their great numbers to create a sold out first night in Liverpool.

Overall, “An Inspector Calls” is a must-see play for those who enjoy a good mystery thriller and appreciate thought-provoking themes. The play’s enduring popularity and relevance make it a classic of the English theatre scene. Go watch!

An Inspector Calls runs for 1 hour and fifty minutes with no interval

An Inspector Calls tour 2023

Liverpool Empire

Tuesday 21 March – Saturday 25 March 2023

Curve, Leicester

Tuesday 28 March – Saturday 1April 2023

Churchill Theatre, Bromley

Tuesday 25 April – Saturday 29 April 2023

Richmond Theatre

Tuesday 2 May – Saturday 6 May 2023

Sheffield Lyceum

Tuesday 9 May – Saturday 13 May 2023

Bradford Alhambra

Tuesday 16 May – Saturday 20 May 2023

Bath Theatre Royal

Tuesday 23 May – Saturday 27 May 2023

Glasgow Theatre Royal

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Karen Beddow founded Mini Travellers in 2014 while doing what she loves most...going on holiday!

Mini Travellers is for parents looking for holiday ideas, destination reviews, days out and things to do with the kids. We also have family travel tips, activity ideas and all other things family holiday related. Take a look at some of our latest reviews for holidays and day trips in the UK.

5 thoughts on “An Inspector Calls UK Tour 2023 | Review”

  1. I thought the scenery was over complicated and actually took something away from the suspense as it seemed ridiculous when actors stopped to get in and out.
    Shouting lines doesn’t help people to hear; I prefer some changes of tone and subtlety as in Mrs Birling’s performance.
    The music was deafening and the ‘extras’ added nothing. I’ve seen better performances of this excellent and still relevant play.

  2. I was very disappointed with the production of An Inspector Calls. In fact we thought we’d walked into the wrong theatre with the absurd set and odd characters flitting around with umbrellas and chairs. We saw an amateur production in Grasmere some years ago and it was much better. No ridiculous set and the play was understated making for a bigger impact. All you needed was a drawing room. The diction wasn’t always clear. There were so many irrelevant extras they looked as if they were part of a job creation scheme. I don’t think Priestly would have recognised his iconic play. Disappointing as we had travelled far.

    • Ah that’s such a shame that you didn’t enjoy it and had travelled so far. I hadn’t seen it before so didn’t have anything to compare it to.

  3. Wonderful performance of this iconic play. I love the set; really interesting and the clever use of it by the actors brought a lot of suspense and tension to the play. All performances were exceptional. I loved the addition of the young boy which gave the youth ‘a voice’. This still goes on of course…pride and not helping when one can and the joy of helping others when we do. We all need each other. Yes, it is OUR responsibility. All of us. Great show, thank you all.


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