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Teddy Ferrara

Published 8 October 2015

What’s it all about?

Love, homosexuality and the complications of modern technology.

On a university campus we meet LGBTQ society president Gabe, newspaper editor Drew and reporter Nicky, student assembly President Tim, transgender Jaq, disabled Jay. Each have their own issues as they struggle to find their feet in the world. But when a story breaks and the actions of new boy Teddy sparks argument, everyone has their own agenda to push.

Who’s in it?

The cast of youthful stars – they’re playing uni students after all – give terrific, nuanced performances that feed this production which is as far from black and white as it is possible to be.

Ryan McParland brings a sweet gawkiness to outsider Teddy before revealing far more extrovert tendencies, Luke Newberry brings focus and conviction to Gabe while Oliver Johnstone’s Drew is riven with unspoken self-doubt and fragility while trying to portray the in-control editor.

What should I look out for?

Pulitzer Prize finalist Christopher Shinn’s beautifully crafted characters and arguments that weave through the knotty realm of love, prejudice, pity, victimhood, politics, integrity and responsibility with the intelligence and balance of a master craftsman. Nothing is polar here; no argument is overwhelming, no viewpoint skewed to make a point. It is writing of the finest quality.

As a single moment goes, watching Matthew Marsh as the university President dancing around tricky, uncomfortable issues with all the grace of an aging newsreader on Strictly is a treat.

In a nutshell?

Christopher Shinn’s campus-set play of prejudice delivers a lesson in creating stunning, intelligent drama.

What’s being said on Twitter?

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Will I like it?

Make no mistake, this is a fantastic, compelling, intelligent production that challenges audiences to think and think hard about the action and their own preconceptions. If you’re looking for world-leading drama, you’ll find it at the Donmar Warehouse.

Teddy Ferrara plays at the Donmar Warehouse until 5 December. You can book tickets through the theatre’s website.

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