The 30th anniversary production of Jonathan Harvey’s coming-out and coming-of-age story Beautiful Thing begins its limited U.K. tour September 8.
Directed by Anthony Simpson-Pike, the production launches at Stratford East, where it continues through October 7, before playing Leeds Playhouse October 18-28 and, subsequently, HOME Manchester October 31–November 11.
The cast features Raphael Akuwudike (Romeo and Juliet, Sons of the Prophet) as Ste and Joshua Asaré (Safe, Comedy Troll) as Jamie with Trieve Blackwood-Cambridge as Tony, Shvorne Marks as Sandra, and Scarlett Rayner as Leah.
Check out the cast in rehearsal in the photos below:
Beautiful Thing follows teenage boys Ste and Jamie, who are
neighbors in South London and are both being bullied—Jamie at school and
Ste at home by his violent father and brother. One night, when things
get too much, Ste seeks refuge in Jamie's flat and, sharing a bed, the
boys strike up a new relationship.
Director Simpson-Pike said in an earlier statement: “Beautiful Thing is an iconic queer story that holds a special place in so many people's hearts. Many people saw their own stories on stage and screen for the first time. In its 30th anniversary year, I feel excited for people who look like me to see their own stories reflected on stage, too, to feel that same stirring of recognition in this seminal piece. Black queer people have always been around, this beautiful story of discovering your true self and falling in love belongs to all of us.”
The production also has set and costume design by
Rosie Elnile, lighting design by Elliot Griggs, sound design by Xana,
movement and intimacy direction by Annie-Lunnette Deakin-Foster, casting
by Isabella Odoffin, associate direction by Robert Awosusi, fight
direction by Bret Yount, costume supervision by Jackie Orton, and voice
and dialect coaching by Joel Trill. The production drama therapist is
Wabriya King, and the casting assistant is Joanna Sturrock.
The tour is presented by Theatre Royal Stratford East, Leeds Playhouse, and HOME Manchester.