Noughts & Crosses

By Malorie Blackman
Adapted by Sabrina Mahfouz

Winner of Excellence in Touring, UK Theatre Awards 2019
Finalist for Best Show for Children and Young People, UK Theatre Awards 2019

“Why love, if losing hurts so much?”

Sephy and Callum sit together on a beach. They are in love.

It is forbidden.

Sephy is a Cross and Callum is a Nought. Between Noughts and Crosses there are racial and social divides. A segregated society teeters on a volatile knife edge.

As violence breaks out, Sephy and Callum draw closer, but this is a romance that will lead them into terrible danger.

This gripping Romeo and Juliet story by acclaimed writer Malorie Blackman and adapted by Sabrina Mahfouz is a captivating drama of love, revolution and what it means to grow up in a divided world.

Tour dates

The Lowry, Salford

18-21 Jan


Belgrade Theatre Coventry

24-28 Jan


Rose Theatre Kingston

31 Jan-11 Feb


Brighton Theatre Royal

21 Feb-25 Feb


Bath Theatre Royal

28 Feb-4 Mar


Oxford Playhouse

7 Mar-11 Mar


Oldham Coliseum

14-18 Mar


Lighthouse, Poole

21-25 Mar


Curve Leicester

28 Mar-1 Apr

Guidance and information

Content Warning: Noughts & Crosses explores a segregated world, in which daily life presents various struggles, inequities, and challenging circumstances. As such, the show contains some themes that viewers may find upsetting to watch.

The show contains depictions of; racism and its effects on physical and mental health, alcoholism, bullying, capital punishment, violence (including domestic violence). The show contains mild sexual content and some strong language, alongside references to sexual violence and suicide.

The show contains loud noises, haze, and strobe lighting.

Duration: 2 hours 10minutes, plus an interval. Interval times will vary at each venue.

For information about BSL, captioned performances and accessibility please check the tour venue websites when they are announced.

Reviews and awards

**** The Observer
**** The Stage (2019)
”a dynamic, powerful, compelling show whatever your age.” British Theatre Guide

Education Resources

This pack is for students studying Drama and Performing Arts, and/or English, and can be used as a text to perform or a devising stimulus for KS3, GCSE, BTEC or A Level.

It contains comprehensive lesson plans, handouts, access to filmed scenes of the production, English learning resources, and includes the newly published playtext of the adaptation by the playwright Sabrina Mahfouz

Purchase the Noughts & Crosses Resource Pack

Noughts & Crosses Resource Sample PDF

Noughts and Crosses teaching pack £50 + VAT (including a hard copy of playtext by Sabrina Mahfouz)

Buy Noughts & Crosses Playtext


All workshops are bespoke and tailored to the needs of your students, and can be scheduled pre- or post-performance at your school, college or university. To arrange a workshop, please email us directly:

A practical drama session exploring the play, production, characters, and themes delivered by a Pilot artist. The workshop can be tailored to using Noughts & Crosses as a creative stimulus for devising, exploring Noughts & Crosses as a set-text, or examining social justice issues related to the play.

For state schools

  • 2 sessions or a full day: £325 + VAT.
  • 1 session (up to 2 hours): £250 + VAT

For private schools

  • 2 sessions or a full day: £475 + VAT
  • 1 session (up to 2 hours): £400 + VAT


Cast and Creatives

  • Effie Ansah


  • James Arden


  • Amie Buhari

    Jasmine and ensemble

  • Tom Coleman

    Andrew Dorn and ensemble. Understudy Callum and Jude.

  • Dan Copeland

    Ryan and ensemble

  • Abiola Efunshile

    Kelanie Adams, Lola, and ensemble. Understudy for Sephy.

  • Ebony Feare

    Dionne, Policewoman, Judge and ensemble. Understudy Minerva and Jasmine.

  • Emma Keele

    Meggie and ensemble

  • Nathaniel McCloskey

    Jude and ensemble

  • Daniel Norford

    Kamal and Ensemble (spring tour)

Novel by Malorie Blackman
Adapted by Sabrina Mahfouz
Directed by Esther Richardson
Designed by Simon Kenny
Lighting Design by Ben Cowens
Music and Sound by Arun Ghosh & Xana
Video Design by Ian William Galloway
Pilot Associate Artist – Sound Design by Adam McCready
Movement Direction by Corey Campbell
Staff Direction by Xolani Crabtree
Casting Associate – Shannon David of Elise Casting
Associate Video Design by Barbora Šenoltová
Voice Coaching by Yvonne Morley-Chisholm
Fight Direction by Kenan Ali
Intimacy Coordination by Kitty Winter


Effie Ansah as Sephy and James Arden as Callum

Amie Buhari as Jasmine

Chris Jack as Kamal Hadley

Amie Buhari, James Arden, and Nathaniel McCloskey

James Arden as Callum and Effie Ansah as Sephy

Nathaniel McCloskey as Jude

Tom Coleman as Andrew Dorn