Theatre Review: Beautiful Thing - Arts Theatre, London ✭✭✭✭✭

Beautiful Thing
Arts Theatre, London

18th April 2013: Twenty years on since Jonathan Harvey's Beautiful Thing was first seen in London, and this show has still got the relevance today as it had back in 1993. Set in front of three flats in a low-rise block in 1993 Thamesmead London, we are drawn to a story of two school boys who live next door to each other, fall in love and ultimately show that it can be a Beautiful Thing against all the odds back in the day when it used to be frowned upon.

Jake Davies (Jamie) and Danny-Boy Hatchard (Ste) play the main characters with great poignancy and affection, dealing with the script effortlessly. Suranne Jones as Jamie's Mother, Sandra, is a superb piece of casting. She shows a raw powerful performance on top of the love for her son and coming to terms with the sexuality of the two boys.

Zaraah Abrahams plays Leah, the boys other neighbour who idolises Mama Cass and learns of their sleeping together but keeps it a secret to help protect them. Again a fantastic performance and a delight to watch. Sandra's boyfriend Tony, played by Oliver Farnworth is another nice addition, playing the part with good comedic timing in places and shows that Tony's heart is in the right place.

There is a nice soundscape throughout, dogs barking in the background, traffic going by in the streets, which adds to the lovely effect of different times of the day with the lighting. The set is minimal but yet effective with a pop-up bed, anything more and the stage would be too cluttered.

Beautiful Thing is a fabulous piece of theatre, and I can only suggest you grab a ticket and be enjoy the talent and writing on offer.

5 stars ✭✭✭✭✭

Arts Theatre
6-7 Great Newport Street
London WC2H 7JB

Nearest tube Leicester Square

Box Office: 0207 836 8463

Performance schedule
Monday – Saturday at 8.00pm
Matinees Thursday and Saturday at 3.00pm

Tickets from £20.00 - £35.00 top price (£45.00 premium)

UK tour – 2013 dates

28 May - 1 June  Liverpool Playhouse
Box office: 0151 709 4776

3 June - 8 June  West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds
Box office: 0113 213 7700

10 June - 15 June Brighton Theatre Royal
Box office: 0844 871 7627  www.atgtickets/brighton