New play about rugby invites Hull sports fans to give theatre a TRY

Fly Half, the play.

Fly Half is a new play by actor Gary Lagden, a RADA graduate from South Wales, which received a five star review from BritishTheatre.com on its first outing at The RADA Festival in London, and comes to Hull for three nights in May.

Supported by Arts Council England, Fly Half is touring to rugby clubs and pubs as well as theatre’s and has been incredibly well received by rugby fans who wouldn’t ordinarily choose a night of live theatre, with audience comments; ‘I look around at big beefy guys with all tears in their eyes, and I was one of them. I watch more sport than theatre but this brought back memories from the pitch that I thought were buried deep and made me feel the connection to the passion of the game.’

A FATHER. A SON. A CLUB. A TOWN. A GAME. FLY HALF

Fly Half is a lyrical hymn to one man’s passion for his family, his town and his beloved game of rugby. Set in an industrial town in South Wales, this play is a celebration of working class families who head out to the match each week, stand pitch side with pride, supporting their local team. Expect some laughs and a definite ‘rage against the beige’ in this one man play by Gary Lagden, with original live songs by Gareth Moulton.  

The play was first performed at Gary’s home town rugby club, Aberavon, in Port Talbot, the town in South Wales that is just as famous for the prestigious actors it has produced, as it is for its steel. Gary and Gareth have performed it in rugby clubs, pubs, even a hotel. Earlier this year, it was part of a special double bill for Wales Week in London and was the Critic’s Choice of 2018 from British Theatre Guide and BritishTheatre.com. Critic, Paul T Davies, begins with a warning that his review, ‘…contains Welsh sentimentality, with no apologies.’ He goes on to compare Gary’s playwriting to Dylan Thomas and his voice to that of the great, late Richard Burton. He says, ‘…the play is about Wales, rugby, and, in particular, the community that the sport fosters and encourages. Welsh pride and passion, the mythology of rugby and the reality of working class life. Simple, it may be, but Lagden’s script is collieries deep…see it if you can’

Working in partnership with Hull Truck Theatre and Back to Ours, Fly Half comes to Willows Social Club on Wednesday 15 May, then William Gemmell on Thursday 16 May and Hull Truck on Friday 17 May. Seats at the Social Clubs are just £5 each and can be booked online via Hull Truck or in person at the clubs. 

Gary has been an actor for over 20 years, after graduating from RADA in the mid 90’s. Director, Geoff Bullen, has been a director at RADA since the 70’s and has critical acclaim for his plays internationally, including the 60th anniversary of The Mousetrap in the West End. Gareth Moulton is an accomplished songwriter and composer. As a singer/musician, Gareth is a member of celebrated 80’s bands Cutting Crew and Wang Chung and tours worldwide. He visits Hull regularly as part of the Snake Davis Band.

Website: Hull Truck Theatre

Website: Back To Ours

[Jayne Williams]

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