Stage is set for Mullin memoirs

Former Sunderland South MP Chris Mullin with his diaries, A View From The Foothills.

Former Sunderland South MP Chris Mullin with his diaries, A View From The Foothills.

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THE critically-acclaimed diaries of a former Wearside Member of Parliament are being turned into a stage play.

Ex-Sunderland South MP and junior minister Chris Mullin’s book, A View from the Foothills, was hailed on its release as an open and honest account of the rise of new Labour.

Now it is being converted for the stage, to be performed at Newcastle’s Live Theatre.

Writer Michael Chaplin has been charged with adapting the book for a live audience, and explained the production will not be aimed solely at those interested in politics.

“We are very conscious that we are providing an insight into the Blair-Brown years.

“Yes, there is a lot of serious material, but we also wanted to capture the humorous insights that he provides.

“Not just into Westminster but his home life, his odd encounters with mad taxi drivers in Durham, and just those sections that are typical of the diaries.

“We are not seeking to make this of interest just to political fans.”

Mr Mullin has published two diaries covering his 23 years in office, and is set to release another volume later this year.

A highly-respected backbench politician, the former journalist was brought into government by Tony Blair, with the pair working together for many years despite their differences of opinion over the invasion of Iraq in 2003.

The play’s director Max Roberts said: “One year on from the election I hope the play presents a timely context for audiences to reflect upon the current political landscape, and the decline and fall of new Labour.

“I also hope the play offers an engaging and good-humoured insight to our recent political history, through the eyes of a warm, wry and compassionate man in possession of one of the sharpest minds in politics.”

The show will run at the Live Theatre from Wednesday, May 11, to Saturday, June 4.

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