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Oliver Mackwood and Charles Diamond in association with Park Theatre present The Birmingham Repertory Theatre production of 

What Shadows

By Chris Hannan

Directed by Roxana Silbert 

Cast includes: Ian McDiarmid 


“I was a storm. I was also a man entirely alone in a storm. There were forces beyond my control and I was one of them." 

Enoch Powell's Rivers of Blood speech was the most polarising political speech of the last 50 years.

Oxford academic and daughter of a Caribbean immigrant, Rose Cruickshank wants answers. Enoch's controversial words about immigration shattered her childhood. Rose cannot find inner peace until she understands what led him to make the speech that defined a generation. Will a meeting with the man himself give her the answers she desperately craves?

Roxana Silbert (Artistic Director, Birmingham Repertory Theatre), directs Ian McDiarmid (The Star Wars films, Merchant of Venice, Life of Galileo) as one of the most provocative figures in recent history.


“Ian McDiarmid gives a standout performance as Powell” ★★★★ The Times

“The most provocative theatrical debate of the decade” ★★★★ The Telegraph

“Compelling” ★★★★ Financial Times 

"A remarkable, tough-talking political play that will divide opinion and arouse emotions. Exactly what you want 
from a first class drama" ★★★★★ Stage Review

"A meaty, ambitious play" Time Out

"Remarkably nuanced…Ian McDiarmid’s performance is intricate and surprising" Evening Standard

"An important - and gripping - play" Camden New Journal

"a hard hitting production of a play that knows how to pack a punch" ★★★★ LoveLondonLoveCulture

"undeniably thought-provoking... Ian McDiarmid's excellent performance is worth the ticket price alone." Broadway World

"gloriously raw... with such a good script" ★★★★ LondonTheatre1

"With lines like these, Ian McDiarmid could be playing Prospero or King Lear. It’s a crisp, sharp, impressive performance." Mature Times

"McDiarmid’s performance... is the beating heart of this play. His astonishing performance and interpretation makes for compelling theatre.” Jonathan Baz



Image: Popperfoto/ Getty Images