With a cast of just two talented actors playing 15 characters between them, ‘Stones In His Pockets’ is something that has to be seen.
The multi-award winning comedy by Irish writer Marie Jones has already been seen by more than two million people, but now the production is on tour and it’s coming to Fife.
The play comes to Rothes Halls in Glenrothes on October 24 following its Tony Award nominated run on Broadway and four and a half years in the West End and on tour.
And the touring production is directed by original director - and husband of the writer - Ian McElhinney.
McElhinney is now starring as Barristan Selmy in the popular ‘Game of Thrones’ series.
And he’s not the only star from that series to be involved in this play.
Conor Delaney, one of the actors bringing the play to life on stage has also appeared in the fantasy series.
But in ‘Stones in His Pockets’ he stars alongside Stephen Jones, known for his role in Ripper Street.
‘Stones in His Pockets’ tells the funny and moving tale of a quiet Irish community turned upside down by the arrival of a massive Hollywood movie shoot.
The pair of actors play all 15 characters between them, from the cheeky lads intent on stardom to a Hollywood Goddess.
With the play having garnered great reviews in the past and enjoying success around the world, what makes it so popular with audiences?
Conor explained: “People always love a good story.
“In a time of instant multimedia it’s refreshing that people can come to the theatre, switch off their devices and sit back to enjoy storytelling in its purest form.
“Watching two actors play multiple characters is something that audiences particularly enjoy in Stones in His Pockets.
“It’s a real rollercoaster of a show and a joy to be a part of.”
Stephen said: “I think it’s so popular because it has a bit of everything; it is really funny but has poignant moments too. It is pure theatre.
“I also think the story connects with people because it’s a real underdog story that tells us it’s okay to fail at things but that it’s important to try again and dream big, no matter how crazy anyone might think that it is.
“‘Stones in His Pockets’ on one hand seems like such an ‘Irish’ show but yet it has had major success on Broadway and the West End and its subject matter is universal so I’m confident that we will give people a great night out.
“I’m just looking forward to playing in cities and towns that I’ve never been to before and making people laugh and maybe cry just a little bit too.”
Both Conor and Stephen have performed the play in the past, but not together.
Conor said: “Strangely enough I bumped into Stephen at a play of a mutual friend of ours a few months back and we traded stories of Stones in His Pockets, so it’s funny we’ll now be sharing the stage.”
Stephen added: “A new actor coming in means that it’s a new show because ‘Stones’ is all about the double act.
“I can’t just go out there and give the exact same performance I did in the previous tour and similarly Conor will be reacting and bouncing off what I do and, not the actor he performed the show with previously.
“So in that sense it keeps the show fresh and provides a new challenge for the both of us.”
Stones in His Pockets has received awards including ‘Best New Comedy’ Laurence Olivier Award; ‘Best Comedy’ Evening Standard Award and ‘Best Play’ Irish Times Theatre Award.
Having done a lot of work for television recently in shows like Jack Taylor, Conor said he’s looking forward to getting back on stage.
He said: “There is, of course, a difference between stage and screen. The camera doesn’t miss a thing and it tracks every millimetre of your face.
“I have a real passion for cinema and screen acting.
“Stagework is a different animal but a real thrill and something you miss and long for after a period of time. You just can’t beat the live audience.
“Most of my recent screen work, while enjoyable, has been of a straight drama capacity so I am very much looking forward to the bounce and joy of performing a comedy piece again.”
And there’s something about being on stage that Stephen really enjoys.
He told the Press: “It’s a great feeling to be able to make somebody laugh.
“All theatre performances are a privilege because there might be one person in the audience who, for whatever reason, really needs that escape for an hour or two. That’s what I have in my head to help me stay motivated every night.
“With a show like ‘Stones in His Pockets’ the comedy is nearly non-stop and knowing we’re making people laugh and helping them enjoy themselves gives me a real buzz.
“It’s also important as an actor to be doing different types of roles and not to be playing the same type of character over and over again.”