Unknown - new play about homelessness announces UK tour and London run

unknown play

Unknown – a new play about homelessness – is to be staged across the UK this autumn.

The Big Issue Foundation and Roughhouse Theatre team up on the production, which was first performed as a radio play in October 2020 before being developed as a stage drama for a short tour in 2021.


Commissioned as part of Big Issue’s 30th anniversary celebrations, the show will head across the UK during a month-long tour this autumn, including a run at London’s Greenwich Theatre from 18 – 22 October.

Moira Hunt, director of Roughhouse Theatre – describes the piece as “a deeply compelling drama that tells the painfully true and profoundly moving story of a young man’s struggle to survive living on the streets of Britain today.” She also believes that it “should be seen by everyone who has ever crossed the road when approaching a homeless person in the street.”

Tracy Griffin, CEO of Big Issue Foundation. added: “With the exponential increase in homelessness over the last three years there has never been a more important time to raise awareness of the issues and the reality of life on the streets in the UK today.

“It is in this context that we are working with Roughhouse Theatre to bring their compelling drama to as wide an audience as possible”

In just two years from 2017 to 2019, more than 800 people died living and sleeping rough on the streets of the UK – a significant number of them have never been identified or named.

Unknown is a poignant and powerful dramatisation of the tragic but true story of one young person’s journey from an abusive childhood to a life on the streets of Bath – one of the most affluent cities in the UK.

Supported by Arts Council England and Big Issue Group, Uknown has been written by award winning playwright Dougie Blaxland with the assistance of six people who have recent experience of homelessness on the streets of Bath and Bristol: Sammy Clark, Nathan Dempster, Ian Duff, Paul Jones, Lloyd Rusdale and Anthony Williams.

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