Theatre preview: James And The Giant Peach

James and the Giant Peach. Pic: Comp
James and the Giant Peach. Pic: Comp
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LIKE all Roald Dahl’s best tales, there is a darkness at the heart of James And The Giant Peach, running at the King’s until Saturday.

James, a lonely young boy, lives with his Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker - the most revolting aunts in England. The pair make him work and slave and never let him play with other children.

Then one day James meets a mystical old man who gives him a bag that contains the strongest magic the world has ever known.

When James spills the bag near an old peach tree, the most incredible things start to happen and James embarks on the adventure of a lifetime.

The story is adapted for the stage from Dahl’s classic tale by The Birmingham Stage Company (BSC), which in its 21 years has now brought six Dahl books to the stage.

Recalling his first encounter with the legendary author, BSC founder Neal Foster revealed: “I called Roald Dahl when I was 15 to ask him if he would let me interview him at my school. When the phone was answered I asked to speak to Ronald Dahl and the man on the end of the phone said there was no-one there of that name.

“When I insisted that this was a Ronald Dahl’s number, he said there was a Roald Dahl living there – would I like to speak to him? Yes, I replied. Speaking, said the man!

“Little did either of us know that I would end up producing more stories by Roald Dahl than any other company in the world.”

James And The Giant Peach, King’s Theatre, Leven Street, until Saturday, various times, £10.50-£14.50, 0131-529 6000