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Beautiful Thing

By Jonathan Harvey

Royal Exchange Theatre, 14 November 2011

Beautiful Thing

Matthew Tennyson as Jamie and Claire-Louise Cordwell as Sandra. Photo - Jonathan Keenan

Every scene has one or a few jokes, often in the form of a precarious situation, yet the action always reveals character and moves the story forward.

That is perhaps the main reason why Jonathan Harvey’s play is so enjoyable and works so well.  Like as not, another is the character of Sandra, here bringing forth an outstanding performance from Claire-Louise Cordwell, she is the kind of ballsy mother that any gay son would wish to have.

You don’t often get a happy ending in a modern play and, if you do, you rarely feel as though it has been earned or is warranted.  With Beautiful Thing, you strike gold on both counts.  This is a satisfying, feel-good play and has the kind of high-quality production values that we have come to expect from the Royal Exchange.

Beautiful Thing is at the Royal Exchange Theatre until 3 December, further details are here.