TWO plays about brothers are are next up at a leading Worcestershire theatre.

First is the much-loved Willy Russell hit musical, Blood Brothers, and then it’s Rain Man, which is based on the Oscar winning film starring Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise.

The plays will be at Malvern’s Festival Theatre and both are productions from the Bill Kenwright stables.

First up for one week from Tuesday, January 29, is Blood Brothers.

There are very few musicals to have received quite such acclaim as this multi-award winning show which surpassed 10,000 performances in London’s West End, one of only three musicals ever to achieve that milestone.

One national newspapers said the play has been affectionately christened the ‘Standing Ovation Musical’, as inevitably it “brings the audience cheering to its feet and roaring its approval”.

The play will star Olivier Award nominated British actress Linzi Hateley in the seminal role of Mrs Johnstone.

She has performed in countless West End productions including Mamma Mia, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, Les Misérables, Chicago, Grease and Mary Poppins!

Blood Brothers itself tells the captivating and moving story of twins who, separated at birth, grow up on opposite sides of the tracks, only to meet again with fateful consequences.

The memorable score includes A Bright New Day, Marilyn Monroe and the emotionally charged hit Tell Me It’s Not True.

Rain Man will be at the Festival for a week from Tuesday, February 5.

After a successful first year, the play - the inaugural production of Bill Kenwright’s Classic Screen to Stage Theatre Company, has extended its run into 2019 with a new star cast with Paul Nicholls playing Raymond Babbit, joined by Chris Fountain as Charlie Babbitt.

Nicholls became a household name when he joined EastEnders as the troubled Joe Wicks in 1996 until 1997.

He has also appeared in acclaimed dramas such as Channel 4’s hit drama Ackley Bridge, The C Word for the BBC and ITV’s Law and Order. His film work includes Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, If Only and The Trench, while his previous theatre work includes Long Day’s Journey Into Night with Jessica Lange (Lyric Theatre), Vincent in Brixton (National Theatre), Billy Liar (Bush Theatre) and The Shawshank Redemption (UK Tour).

Fountain won Best Actor in the 2008 British Soap Awards for his portrayal of Justin Burton in Hollyoaks. He played Tommy Duckworth for two years in Coronation Street and has also starred in Dancing On Ice and most recently the ITV drama, Girlfriends. In 2016 he made his stage debut as Guy in the award-winning production of The Full Monty UK Tour.

The play features self-centered salesman Charlie Babbitt, who discovers that his long-lost brother Raymond, an autistic savant with a genius for numbers, has inherited the family fortune; he sets out to get ‘his half’.

Charlie ‘borrows’ Raymond from the institution where he has spent most of his life and the two brothers embark on a trip across America where Charlie soon discovers that Raymond is worth more than he could have ever imagined…

Inspired by the heart-warming Oscar-winning film, which famously starred Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman and won Oscar’s for Best Picture, Best Screenplay, Best Director and Best Actor, Rain Man follows previous acclaimed Bill Kenwright productions of films to the stage in recent years.