IT’S a story which sounds so improbable that if you pitched it as the basis for a possible production you’d be told to come back with something more plausible.

But the backstory behind Innit, the musical which returns to The Lowry next week, is 100 per cent true which makes the show even more fascinating.

Innit follows Ashley, a disaffected teenager who falls in with the wrong crowd but finds redemption though music.

Lancashire Telegraph: Inspiration - Micky Dacks is aiming to transform young lives

Innit is the work of Micky Dacks, former gang member turned youth worker, former inmate turned playwright. It has been his passion for the past 20 years and now he’s seeing his creation take to the stage in Salford, the place he grew up in.

“Although it’s set in Salford which is where my heart is, it could be anywhere where working class culture exists,” said Micky. “You get scallies all round the world.

“It’s the most aspirational show you could possibly imagine. It’s real, relatable a modern day tale set in deepest murkiest part of an estate but the message is one of absolute hope where people in those area think there pretty much is none.”

Micky’s own experiences have heavily influenced Innit.

Excluded from school, he joined a street gang. Often in trouble he was no stranger to the courts. For long period of his teenage years he found himself homeless and he became increasingly involved in criminal activity - drug dealing, causing criminal damage and even assault.

Eventually he was sentenced to nine months in prison and it was this period behind bars which changed his life.

“When you are in prison you have either got a life on the outside or you haven’t,” he said. “I knew the life I had before I went to prison wasn’t good for me and I didn’t want to communicate with anyone from that world, I decided to use my time to try and change my life.”

For Micky that transformation began with a simple pad of paper.

“It had my prison number on it which in itself was a shock,” he said. “I was no longer a person, just a number. Instead of writing letters to people on the outside, I used it to put down my thoughts.

“When I was at school which wasn’t very often, I loved English, and I started to write these poems. I didn’t think anything of them until I was released.

“I had to go and see a probation officer and she asked to see them. Amazingly she didn’t laugh. In fact she said that they were really good.

“I always name check her - she was called Chris Ashton - because she’s one of the most incredible people I’ve ever met.

“She got me on a word processing course and I just wrote and wrote for eight hours a day in this little office in the probation service. It was so cathartic for me having a voice to speak about my experiences which had led me to be in prison.”

These initial thoughts transformed in time into the basis for Innit.

“Chris had got me on the housing list and for the first time I had somewhere of my own to live,” said Micky. “It was an area where there were a lot of musicians and artists. My neighbour heard me reciting one of my poems and he asked me into his flat where he had all these musical instruments.

“He just started to play along and then invited other musicians in. Before you knew it I was reciting my poems with a drummer, guitarist and didgeridoo.”

Micky became a regular at open mic nights and started to develop his writings into Innit, a musical complete with original songs.

In 2002 Micky formed Innit Productions and the musical was born. However a serious car accident in 2010 which left Micky badly injured halted the musical’s development.

Micky had to recuperate - at the same time he studied for his MA - and created I4YPC a charity with the aim of bringing Innit back to the stage - it had enjoyed a brief studio showcase at The Lowry.

The aim of I4YPC is to engage as many young people as possible in theatre and it ploughs back money raised from ticket sales into buying up seats for matinee performances, enabling youngsters from Salford to come to the shows for free.

“Theatre is transformational,” said Micky. “We want to try and prevent young people from going down the wrong path. Innit is a show for everyone to enjoy. You’ll laugh, cry and go on a rollercoaster journey. And by buying a ticket you’ll be directly supporting a young person getting in to the theatre for free.”

Innit, The Lowry, Salford Quays, Wednesday, September 13 to Saturday, September 23. Details from