THE new production at Bristol’s Tobacco Factory is the original 1993 stage version of Beautiful Thing, on from Thursday 11th to Saturday 27th October – and it features a community choir.
Jonathan Harvey’s play, famously filmed for television in 1996 and released on the big screen as a result of its popularity, is set on a London estate where two boys fall in love, and the community comes to terms with their relationship.
Directed by the Tobacco Factory’s artistic director Mike Tweddle to mark its 25th anniversary, the play is a razor-sharp depiction of life and love on a post-war council estate as well as a nostalgic trip back to the early nineties and the songs of the Mamas and the Papas.
The Bristol show has a professional cast and a choir of local Bristol residents who have played an integral part in the production’s development. They perform songs throughout the play and have been rehearsing together since the early summer.
Beautiful thing is the story of teenagers Ste and Jamie, next door neighbours on the Thamesmead estate in South London. Jamie’s being bullied at school and Ste’s being bullied at home. One evening when it all gets too much, Ste seeks refuge at Jamie’s and something frightening and beautiful begins.
Ted Reilly plays Jamie and Tristan Waterson plays Ste, with Finn Hanlon as Tony, Amy-Leigh Hickman as Leah and Phoebe Thomas as Sandra.
For more details, visit the website, www.tobaccofactorytheatres.com or telephone 0117 902 0344.
After its Bristol run, Beautiful Thing tours to the New Vic Theatre and The Dukes Lancaster, each venue providing its own local choir.
Rehearsal images by Mark Dawson