Boys From the Blackstuff world premiere in Liverpool in 2023


Alan Bleasdale’s seminal drama Boys From the Blackstuff is coming to the stage in a production written by Sherwood’s James Graham – and the world premiere is taking place at Liverpool’s Royal Court next year.

Tickets for the hotly anticipated new show go on sale at 11am tomorrow.

Boys From the Blackstuff will be staged at the Roe Street Art Deco landmark from September 15 to October 28, 2023 in a co-production between the Royal Court and Stockroom Productions.

Alan Bleasdale said today: “Almost all of my stage plays are set in one location and using real time. The one attempt I made to use multiple characters and multiple sets and the passage of time was a disaster. So, when the idea of the stage version of the series was suggested with James Graham as the writer I just thought: ‘I don’t know how to do it. But James does.

“While I’m pleased that the work is still well regarded, the biggest sadness for me is that in the 40 years since I wrote The Boys from the Blackstuff we might have hoped that things would get better. But they haven’t. Have they?”

And James Graham, whose stage hits include This House, Ink and Quiz, added: “Alan Bleasdale is one of the reasons I became a writer. Watching his work as I was growing up, hearing those voices and seeing those worlds, meant a lot to someone from my background.

Top: Alan Bleasdale and James Graham on the Royal Court stage. Photo by Jason Roberts


“I could never have dared dream that years later I would be working with him, and on his most famous, heartbreaking, hilarious masterpiece. But Alan is the most generous and supportive of collaborators and it’s been one of the honours of my writing life thus far to work on this show.”

It's 80s Liverpool and Chrissie, Loggo, George, Dixie and Yosser are used to hard work and providing for their families. But there is no work and there is no money. What are they supposed to do? Work harder, work longer, buy cheaper, spend less? They just need a chance.

Life is tough but the lads can play the game. Find the jobs, avoid the ‘sniffers' and see if you can have a laugh along the way.

The production will be directed by Stockroom’s artistic director Kate Wasserberg.

Royal Court executive producer Kevin Fearon said: “For a producing theatre in Liverpool it doesn’t get any bigger or better than this.

2To be able to bring together two of the country’s finest writers on such an important piece of drama is a hugely exciting opportunity for Liverpool’s Royal Court.

"Everyone in the building is excited about this incredible show and our job now is to make it something we can all be proud of.”

Boys From the Blackstuff comes to Liverpool’s Royal Court from September 15 to October 28, 2023. Tickets HERE