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Beautiful Thing

Jonathan Harvey's tender, open-hearted play about two damaged boys and the love that heals them.

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Category: Theatre
Company: New Theatre
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Beautiful Thing

Date: 11 Jan 2021

Jamie is 15, shy, and bullied at school.

He lives with his single mum Sandra on a run-down London housing estate, but she’s preoccupied with dreams of a better job and her new, younger lover, so barely notices that her sensitive, Cagney & Lacey-loving son has a crush on Ste, the football-mad boy next door,

When Ste is badly beaten by his alcoholic father and Sandra offers him shelter, the two boys grow closer and gradually fall in love. But do they have any chance of happiness, in their tough, working-class world?

When Jonathan Harvey wrote this tender, open-hearted play about two damaged boys and the love that heals them, the age of consent for gay sex in the UK was still 21, it was illegal to ‘promote’ homosexuality in schools, and civil unions and same-sex marriage weren’t even on the radar.

Yet, nearly 30 years on, it still holds remarkable power, because so much of what it explores is timeless: discovering your sexuality, finding love and acceptance, fighting your demons, surviving against the odds, being an outsider, and the importance of community.

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