I, Daniel Blake on stage

Published: 28 March 2023
Reporter: David Upton

I, Daniel Blake cast

A world première stage adaptation of I, Daniel Blake that exposes the reality behind the cost-of-living crisis headlines will open at Northern Stage (May 25–June 10) before touring.

The first stage adaptation of Ken Loach’s award-winning film will be written by actor and comedian Dave Johns who won a best actor and best newcomer awards for his role in the film.

Ken Loach said, “this story is more relevant now than ever. Who better to put it on stage than Dave Johns, the original Daniel Blake?”

David Nellist will play Daniel. Originally from Wallsend in Newcastle, he appeared as Mike Stamford in Sherlock on BBC One with Benedict Cumberbatch and was recently in Stonehouse opposite Matthew Macfadyen on ITV.

Bryony Corrigan will play Katie best known as series regular Vanessa in Mischief Theatre’s The Goes Wrong Show on BBC. Her theatre credits include the recent stage adaptation of Bill Bryson’s Notes from a Small Island and My Romantic History at Live Theatre. Kema Sikazwe (aka Kema Kay) will play China, a role he played in the film after being spotted by Ken Loach on a visit to Newcastle.

The actor, rapper and singer wrote and starred in Shine at Live Theatre—a show about his experience of moving to Newcastle aged three which is about to be adapted for a TV musical drama. The rest of the cast are Janine Leigh who appeared alongside Joanne Froggatt in Channel 4 film In Our Name, Micky Cochrane (Billy Elliot the Musical, Curve) and former Northern Stage Young Company member Jodie Wild making her professional stage debut.

After its première, the production will tour to Birmingham Rep (June 13–25), HOME Manchester (June 27–July 1) and Exeter Northcott Theatre (July 5–8). Confirmed venues for the autumn include Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse, Leeds Playhouse and the Belgrade Theatre Coventry and a full autumn 2023 tour will be announced soon.

    Related listings

  • I, Daniel Blake - Adapted by Dave Johns from the film written by Paul Laverty

Are you sure?