Stratford East

08 September – 07 October 2023

Press Night: Thursday 14 September at 7pm

Theatre Royal Stratford East, Leeds Playhouse and HOME Manchester today announce cast andcreatives for a new production to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Jonathan Harvey’s coming-outand coming-of-age story Beautiful Thing, directed by Anthony Simpson-Pike.

Raphael Akuwudike (Ste) and Joshua Asaré (Jamie) will lead the cast and are joined by Trieve

Blackwood-Cambridge (Tony), Shvorne Marks (Sandra) and Scarlett Rayner (Leah).

Commenting on his new production, Director Anthony Simpson-Pike says: “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.”

Beautiful Thing opens at Stratford East from 08 September – 07 October, before playing Leeds Playhouse 18 – 28 October and HOME Manchester 31 October – 11 November.

Writer Jonathan Harvey

Director Anthony Simpson-Pike

Set & Costume Designer Rosie Elnile

Lighting Designer Elliot Griggs

Sound Designer Xana

Movement & Intimacy Director Annie-Lunnette Deakin-Foster

Casting Director Isabella Odoffin CDG

Associate Director Robert Awosusi

Fight Director Bret Yount

Costume Supervisor Jackie Orton

Voice & Dialect Coach Joel Trill

Production Dramatherapist Wabriya King

Casting Assistant Joanna Sturrock

Teenage boys Ste and Jamie are neighbours on a South London estate. Jamie is more knowledgeableabout The Sound of Music than football, while classmate Ste never misses a sports day. Both arebeing bullied, Jamie at school and Ste at home by his violent father and brother. One night, whenthings get too much, Ste seeks refuge in Jamie’s flat and, sharing a bed, the boys strike up a new relationship. Together they come to terms with their sexuality and explore their feelings alongside their Mama Cass loving, rebellious friend Leah and with the much-needed emotional support of Jamie’s lioness mother, Sandra.

This 30th-anniversary revival of Jonathan Harvey’s iconic, coming-out and coming-of-age story set in the nineties, is about community, friendship, rites of passage and what it is to be 16 and in love. Beautiful Thing is a touching, urban love story, full of warmth and humour.

Age guidance: 14+

Presented by Theatre Royal Stratford East, Leeds Playhouse and HOME Manchester.

Tickets now on sale. For more information visit