25th anniversary production of Beautiful Thing heads to Bristol

The iconic show, Beautiful Thing is to get a run at the Bristol Tobacco Factory

Beautiful Thing, which tells the story of two 17-year olds growing up on an estate in Thamesmead, was a seminal moment in representation of working class LGBT stories in British theatre. Beautiful Thing came out in the wake of a nation living in the shadow of the AIDS epidemic and, in the face of Thatcher’s attempts to alienate the LGBT community, Harvey presented an optimistic coming-of-age story of two young working class schoolboys discovering their sexuality. The premiere in 1993 took place at the Bush Theatre before moving to the Donmar Warehouse and the West End starring Jonny Lee Miller (Trainspotting), Philip Glenister (Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes) and Jill Marsden (EastEnders).

The film of Beautiful Thing, directed by Hettie MacDonald in 1996, was recently voted 20th most iconic LGBT film in history with the hopeful nature of the movie as well as the intersectionality of the piece often being remarked upon. The film sees Meera Syal and Linda Henry appear and launched the career of Tameka Empson, it remains a surprisingly unique watch even now, 22 years on from release.

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Beautiful Thing will be directed by Tobacco Factory Theatre’s Artistic Director, Mike Tweddle and runs 11-27 October. Amy Lee-Hickman will star in the show, known for her role as Nasreen Paracha inAckley Bridge, a role that made waves as a rare representation of a gay Asian young woman.

About the author: Jake Hook
The editor and chief of THEGAYUK. All in a previous life wrote and produced songs on multi-platinum records.

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