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What I Learned from Johnny Bevan by Luke Wright

What I Learned from Johnny BevanPoet Luke Wright’s multi award-winning political drama announces London debut with three weeks at Soho Theatre.

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 2015 Edinburgh Fringe by storm. The show received a Fringe First for the quality of the writing and Wright received a Stage Award for Acting Excellence for his hurricane performance. Now this critically acclaimed solo stage show makes its full London debut with a three week run at Soho Theatre from 22nd February to 12th March 2016.

‘A pulsating piece of poetic storytelling’ ★★★★ Lyn Gardner, Guardian

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. Twenty 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?

Written and performed by Luke in deft visceral, punchy verse, with a score by Ian Catskilkin from the band Art Brut, tautly directed by Soho Theatre Associate Director and nabokov Artistic Director Joe Murphy and produced by Paul Jellis, What I Learned From Johnny Bevan is a theatrically brilliant, breath-taking poetic monologue.

‘It’s like an episode of This Is England, delivered by one man. Brilliant’ ★★★★ Daily Record

Luke Wright tours the world each year with his unique brand of poetry and can often be seen opening for 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.

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 Director 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.

What I Learned From Johnny Bevan will be published by Penned In the Margins in paperback and limited edition hardback to coincide with the London run.

What I Learned from Johnny Bevan by Luke Wright
Multi award winning, searingly relevant political drama from leading poet Wright.

Soho Theatre 21 Dean Street W1D 3NE London
22 Feb – 12 March (not 28 Feb, 6, 10 March) 7.15pm
£15, concessions £12.50 (previews Mon 22 & Tue 23 £10)


  • Neil Cheesman

    First becoming involved in an online theatre business in 2005 and launching londontheatre1.com in September 2013. Neil writes reviews and news articles, and has interviewed over 150 actors and actresses from the West End, Broadway, film, television, and theatre. Follow Neil on Twitter @LondonTheatre1

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