Hall’s journey from Billy to War Horse to Pitmen

Pitmen feature
Cast members of TheatreWorks’ The Pitmen Painters by Lee Hall include, from left, Jackson Davis, Paul Whitworth, James Carpenter, and Nicholas Pelczar. Photo by Mark Kitaoka

The Bay Area has been pretty good to Lee Hall of late. Last year, his musical adaptation (with music by Sir Elton John) of his movie Billy Elliot received rapturous notices (though closed a month early) at the Orpheum Theatre in San Francisco. It’s a show that had already won the British scribe a 2009 Tony Award for best book of a musical.

Then his movie adaptation of the stage hit War Horse, co-written by Richard Curtis and directed by Steven Spielberg, opened in theaters around the world. And next summer, the play version (which Hall did not write, though he was asked early on) gallops into the SHN season.

Hall’s Broadway follow-up to Billy was a play called The Pitmen Painters, another exploration of arts influence on the population of Northern England. Now that play makes its West Coast debut courtesy of TheatreWorks in Mountain View.

I spoke with Hall about his many and varied projects for an interview in the San Francisco Chronicle.

Read the interview here.


Lee Hall’s The Pitmen Painters continues through Feb. 12 in a TheatreWorks production at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro St., Mountain View. Tickets are $19-$69. Call 650-463-1960 or visit www.theatreworks.org.

One thought on “Hall’s journey from Billy to War Horse to Pitmen

  1. Pingback: TheatreWorks’ Pitmen paints poignant arts ed picture | Chad Jones' Theater Dogs

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