Politics, passion and harsh reality in poet’s theatre debut

What I Learned From Johnny Bevan
What I Learned From Johnny Bevan

What I Learned from Johnny Bevan is a theatre debut for poet Luke Wright at the Brighton Fringe.

As spokesman Steve Forster explains: “He’s best known for blistering, incisive and astute performance poetry and regular slots on BBC Radio, but it was Luke Wright’s first theatre show What I Learned from Johnny Bevan that took the Edinburgh Fringe by storm and then sold out three weeks at London’s Soho Theatre.

“Wright received a Stage Award for Acting Excellence for his hurricane performance and the show received a Fringe First for the quality of the writing. The London run added a nomination for the 2017 Off West End Awards, and Luke has been invited to stage the show for politicians at the seat of UK power, The Houses of Parliament. Now, as part of a national tour, this critically acclaimed solo stage show visits the Brighton Fringe at The Old Market on May 16. His 2015 show Stay-at-Home-Dandy sold out last year at Brighton Dome.”

Steve added: “What I Learned From Johnny Bevan is a compelling, politically-charged story encompassing shattered friendships, class and social ceilings and The Labour Party’s battle for its soul.

“At university the whip-smart, mercurial Johnny Bevan saves Nick, smashing his comfortable middle-class bubble and firing him up about politics, music and literature.

“Some 20 years later, as their youthful dreams disintegrate alongside the social justice they hoped for, can Nick, now a jaded music journalist, save Johnny from himself?

“Luke Wright delivers an impassioned, spellbinding performance of his razor sharp script that is infused with humour, humanity and wit. What I Learned From Johnny Bevan strikes at the heart of British politics, questioning the middle-class value system that encouraged the rise of New Labour and David Cameron’s brand of Conservatism, and saw both parties abandon the working class. This gripping story is a modern fable that reflects today’s political polarisation and resonates with the disillusionment felt by many.”

Tickets cost £12.50 (concessions £10). Visit theoldmarket.com or call 01273 201 801.

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