What I Learned From Johnny Bevan

Mon 17th – Sun 30th Aug 2015


“Debut theatre show from master of the spoken word, directed by Joe Murphy (Soho Theatre/nabokov) ”





Luke Wright


‘Performance poetry’s key revivalist’ (Metro) makes his theatre debut with a compelling story of friendship, class and the death of New Labour. And a really bad idea for a festival.

Nick has fallen out of love with London and his life as a journalist. Forced to review the launch of 
URBANIA, a new inner-city festival, he starts to remember his shattered friendship with Johnny Bevan, the whip-smart, mercurial kid from an Essex council estate. Back at university Johnny inspired him and saved him from living his father’s life. Then their relationship came to its tragic end. Twenty years later, can he save the world-weary Nick all over again?

‘The most relevant poet of his generation’ Exeunt

Written and performed by Luke in deft visceral, punchy verse, with a score by Ian Catskilkin from the band Art Brut, What I Learned From Johnny Bevan is a breath-taking poetic monologue about the British relationship between class and politics. Funny, poignant and full of dynamism, Wright’s first collaboration with Soho Theatre Associate Director and nabokov Artistic Director Joe Murphy is also his first ever theatre piece.

‘His lexical acrobatics are astounding, …go for the wordsmithery, stay for the painful poignancy’ The List

Luke Wright has also written eight poetry shows, three books of verse and four spoken word albums. He tours the world each year with his unique brand of poetry, and is often seen with John Cooper Clarke. His verse documentaries on Channel 4 have been enjoyed by millions of viewers and his poems can often be heard on BBC Radios 3 & 4, sometimes further afield. He is a regular contributor to Sony Award-winning Saturday Live and has numerous main channel TV appearances under his belt. He curates the spoken word line-ups at The Latitude Festival, Festival Number 6 and The Edinburgh International Book Festival. ‘Luke is a craftsman with a big heart’ Ian McMillan

Director Joe Murphy won a Fringe First with nabokov for BUNNY (Underbelly) and universal acclaim for BLINK (Traverse), both of which transferred Off-Broadway. As Artistic Direcor of nabokov he also directed the hit production of Nick Payne’s INCOGNITO at the Bush. Most recently Associate Director on the mega-hit and Broadway transferred Wolf Hall, Joe is now Associate Director at Soho Theatre.

Praise for Wright’s previous work:

***** Scotsman, Herald, List, One4Review, Broadway Baby, ThreeWeeks, Edinburgh Festivals Magazine, Scotsgay, Remote Goat

****Telegraph, Chortle, Exeunt, Mail on Sunday, Metro, Skinny, Scotsgay, WhatsOnStage, Fest, TV Bomb

Luke is also performing his latest touring show, Stay-at-Home Dandy at Underbelly at 18.30 daily and curates Babble On at the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Admission: £12(£10)


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