Gareth Thomas rugby drama to touch down at London’s Arcola Theatre

Croach Touch Pause Engage

It’s scored a big hit with regional audiences and now Crouch, Touch, Pause, Engage – the critically-acclaimed play about gay rugby player Gareth Thomas, comes to London’s Arcola Theatre next month.

Directed by Max Stafford-Clark, and written by Robin Soans, the play is a co-production by Out of Joint, National Theatre Wales and the Arcola.

The cast of six – Rhys ap William, Patrick Brennan, Katie Elin-Salt, Daniel Hawksford, Lauren Roberts and Bethan Witcomb – play all the characters, and each plays Gareth himself at different stages in his story.

Croach Touch Pause Engage - Robin Soans - National Theatre Wales/Out of Joint - 19 February 2015Directed by Max Stafford-ClarkDesigned by Angela DavisLighting by Katy Morrison

“I was doing something nobody had done before, and if you’re the first to do something, you have to be prepared to take the sh*t for it,” said Thomas.

On the eve of one of the most important games of his career, Welsh rugby legend Gareth Thomas received a warning: The Sun newspaper was going to “out” him as gay.

This is the story of two Welsh names bruised, but not beaten, by media speculation; Gareth “Alfie” Thomas, 100 caps for Wales, once its captain, now the world’s most prominent gay sportsman; and his hometown, Bridgend.

Writer Robin Soans is celebrated for his documentary verbatim plays based on interviews with real people, including Out of Joint’s acclaimed shows Mixed Up North, A State Affair and Talking to Terrorists.

The show forms part of a season of work about the state of the British media at Arcola Theatre.

Crouch, Touch, Pause, Engage runs at the Arcola Theatre, Dalston, from May 20-June 20.

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