Lawrence Enquiry Embarks on National TourDate: 7 July 1999
The critically acclaimed play dramatising the inquiry into the Stephen Lawrence murder will embark on a seven-week national tour in early September, including seven performances at the National Theatre in London (21-25 September). The Colour of Justice premiered at the north London Tricyle Theatre in January of this year before transferring to first the Theatre Royal Stratford East and then to the West End's Victoria Palace for a two-week run in March. It was filmed and screened by the BBC at the end of February.
In April 1993, 18-year-old Stephen was murdered near a south London bus stop by a group of white youths who souted 'nigger' before attacking him. Although five youths were charged with the murder, no conviction was ever made.
The Colour of Justice is a dramatised reconstruction of the key moments in the six-month inquiry into the teenager's murder. The two-hour play is adapted from more than 10,000 pages of transcripts taken during the 69 days of public hearings, which also revealed the Metropolitan Police force's racial prejudice and bungling of the case. As no television cameras were allowed in the courtroom, the play provides a rare opportunity to view the legal proceedings and assess the evidence behind the racially motivated murder. The play ends as the inquiry itself did - with a one minute silent tribute to Stephen and to the courage of his parents.
The Colour of Justice has been edited by Richard Norton-Taylor and directed by Nicholas Kent with Surian Fletcher-Jones. This is the team's fourth collaboration of this kind. Their previous reconstructions are Half the Picture (The Scott Arms to Iraq Inquiry), Nuremberg and Srebenica, all Tricycle Theatre productions.
The Colour of Justice tour will open at the West Yorkshire Playhouse (7-11 September) and continues to Manchester's Library Theatre (13-18 September), the National's Lyttelton Theatre (21-25 September), the Nottingham Playhouse (29 September - 2 October), the Cambridge Corn Exchange (4-7 October), Belfast's Grand Opera House (11-16 October) and the Sheffield Crucible (19-23 October).