HOME   ARCHIVE   GALLERY   SHOP   ABOUT US      
 

 
MORRISSEY LOOMS LARGE IN THORN PLAY AT THE KINGS ARMS SALFORD
 

Star date: 15th July 2017

MORRISSEY, BOWIE AND GROWING UP IN THE SEVENTIES

Thorn by Tim Keogh
Monday 24th and Tuesday 25th July
Kings Arms 7:30pm £8/£10

A young Manc called 'Steven Patrick' struggles to come to terms with life in the Seventies in Tim Keogh's Thorn, a play the writer says "is based largely on my own experiences, the songs of The Smiths, and a dash of imagination...", as Ian Leslie discovers...

Full details here...


Tim Keogh
click image to enlarge

Thorn is a play that is set in the harsh and gritty world of the early 1970s. Despite the cold and unwelcoming backdrop, the drama opens with David Bowie appearing on television playing Starman in full make-up and glam attire. It's a moment in popular culture that is often cited as a catalyst by many artists.

"Bowie's appearances on Lift off with Ayshea and Top of the Pops were seismic" insists Thorn writer Tim Keogh "I was 14 in 1972 and was astounded by what I was seeing and hearing: the red hair, the lipstick, the make-up, the clothes and of course the songs. A Starman who literally looked like he had arrived from another planet...

"Of course we had Marc Bolan and Bryan Ferry but Bowie was the man" he adds "John Lennon said that as soon as he saw Elvis Presley 'that was it'. For me and my generation it was the appearance of Bowie on TV... 'that was it!'"

This seminal David Bowie event split audiences and opinions across Britain, including those of the Irish-Mancunian Morrissey household. Tim elaborates on his young, enigmatic lead character... "The play is about a boy aged 14 growing up in Manchester in the summer of 1972" he explains "The play is based largely on my own experiences, the songs of The Smiths, and a dash of imagination. It seemed natural to name the character Steven Patrick."

The iconic Bowie appearance happened in an era of limited TV channels. This meant that his sexually ambiguous alter-ego, Ziggy Stardust, was beamed into households all over Britain, and was witnessed by millions. It was an unusual, sexually provocative and divisive performance.

It was extremely shocking in the early 1970s; only five years prior to this homosexuality was illegal and punishable by a prison sentence. The seventies were also a bleak period for many working class families. Thorn taps into this austere environment and uses the themes, including the three-day week, power cuts, football hooliganism and the rise of the National Front to help 'paint a vulgar picture'.

Morrissey Minor 
Thorn focuses on the juxtaposition of the play's sensitive and artistic central character 'Steven' against this desperate and often vicious backdrop. Although a gifted runner, Steven struggles with male machismo and the aggressive nature of young men.

It leaves him wide open to insult and attack. Bowie and the rise of Glam Rock help to provide an outlet and allow Steven (and other like-minded souls) to be different.
With an alliance formed with his idols, the protagonist feels encouraged to find a means of self-expression, even if doesn't fit in with the alpha-male stereotype. 

Buoyed by a new free-thinking attitude, Steven is compelled to explore his own identity, sexuality and unstoppable creative talent. He begins to examine his passion for music and literature, and uses this as a form of escapism.

Thorn is a coming-of-age tale that focuses on self-expression through art and music. The play has a universal theme of adolescent uncertainty and finding a kinship with an expressive act. It is a relatable subject that most will have experienced: whether encountered via Rock n' Roll, Glam, Punk, Hip-Hop...or even a four-piece from Manchester.

Tim describes his own first-hand experience of The Smiths: "I attended the second ever Smiths gig at the long gone Manhattan Sound  in Princess Street, Manchester in January '83" he recalls "There were only about thirty people there. I bumped into Johnny Marr last year and told him that I was there. He seemed genuinely chuffed..."

The play will have extra resonance with those of a certain vintage and, of course, those that are familiar with work of Steven Patrick Morrissey. I asked Tim how he would describe the play in a few sentences...

"Thorn explores the difficulties experienced by a sensitive young adolescent growing up in Manchester in the early 1970s and asks the question, amongst others, about what it means to be a man" he says "Has the world changed or have I changed?...Oo-er missus..."

Tim thanks me for my time, but 'the pleasure the privilege was mine'.

Thorn by Tim Keogh
Monday 24th and Tuesday 25th July
Kings Arms 7:30pm £8/£10

For further details – click here

Thorn is part of the Greater Manchester Fringe Festival

Words by Ian Leslie

Please enter your comment below:
 
 
 
SLADS
Salford Live Events
Salford Star contact
Salford Star
Salford Star print
Deli Lama
advertisement
 
Contact us
phone: 07957 982960
Facebook       Twitter
 
 
Recent comments
article: POLICE INVOLVED AS TURF WAR BREAKS OUT IN QUIET WORSLEY SUBURB
Slurp - get a map out. Yes, whilst the White Horse and Broad Oak Primary School are in Swinton, the area containging the footpath ... [more]
article: SALFORD TOWER BLOCK CLADDING CRISIS WILL COST MILLIONS OF POUNDS AND COULD TAKE YEARS TO SOLVE
If only there were other affordable places to go to. The majority of us have no option but to stay. ... [more]
article: SALFORD TOWER BLOCK CLADDING CRISIS WILL COST MILLIONS OF POUNDS AND COULD TAKE YEARS TO SOLVE
Moved out already. Don't trust these charlatans and social cleansers with my life. ... [more]
article: OLIVERS YOUTH CLUB IN SALFORD TO BLACKPOOL BIKE RIDE FOR THE CHRISTIE
Well done lads, a lovely article to read about the young youth of today. A very positive example to show & encourage other young y... [more]
article: SALFORD CITY COUNCIL TO BUILD PRIVATE SALE AND RENT HOUSES
Great report written above, thank you to those few that asked on behalf www.streetsupportsalfordmanchester.com and what's more to ... [more]
 
 
 
 
 
Days
Hours
Minutes
Seconds
 
 
 

Donate

Help the Salford Star...

all donations welcome

 
 

More articles...

WILLOWS MEMORIES SHOWCASE FEATURES SALFORD REDS AND VARIETY CLUB

Star date: 23rd July 2017

110 YEARS AT THE WILLOWS CELEBRATED WITH LIVE SHOW AND FILM

Willows Memories Showcase
Sunday 30th July 7:30pm
The Lowry £20/£5

After Salford Red Devils take on Wigan in the Challenge Cup semi-final next Sunday, the past glories of Salford Reds and its adjoining Willows Variety Club are celebrated at The Lowry.

There's a screening of a film full of memories of The Willows, plus a fab 70s-style live Variety Club show starring The Matchstalk Men, comedian Austin Knight and Drifters tribute band, Under The Boardwalk.

Full details here...

TALK RADIO’S IAIN LEE AND KATHERINE BOYLE IN THE RABBIT HOLE SALFORD

Star date: 22nd July 2017

BROADCASTING FROM THE KINGS ARMS...

The Rabbit Hole
Saturday 29th July 1pm
The Kings Arms £10

Talk Radio presenters Iain Lee and Katherine Boyle invite you to participate in their live phone-in podcast, The Rabbit Hole, happening at The Kings Arms next Saturday as part of the GM Fringe. Anything can happen, as Ian Leslie discovers.

Full details here...

CLOWN FEST HITS MANCHESTER FOR WACKY WEEKEND

Star date: 22nd July 2017

FROM WAGGLEDANCING BEES TO CYRIL THE SQUIRREL TO THE BESTEST CABARET

Clown Fest
Friday 28th and Saturday 29th July
The Omnitorium, Exchange Square, Mcr

Clown Fest arrives in Manchester this week, complete with mad, surreal performances, a pop up 100 seat 'Omnitorium' and family shows that cost whatever you can afford. And there's virtually no scary faced traditional clowns, just clowning at its finest.

Full details here...

SCHIZOPHRENIC TEENAGE GIRL TRIBULATIONS AT KINGS ARMS SALFORD

Star date: 22nd July 2017

FRANK, FUNNY AND MOVING...

The Little Creepers
Tuesday 25th - Wednesday 26th July
The Kings Arms £8/£5

Manic Arts Theatre Company brings a play about a teenage schizophrenic who worries about sex and boys...and the beast inside...to The Kings Arms this week, as part of the GM Fringe. It's frank, funny and moving, as Ian Leslie discovers.

Full details here...

SHIRLEY BAKER EXHIBITION HUGE SUCCESS AT MANCHESTER AT GALLERY

Star date: 21st July 2017

PEOPLE INVITED TO SHARE EXPERIENCES OF BAKER'S PHOTOS THIS WEEKEND

The Shirley Baker Exhibition, currently running at Manchester Art Gallery, has already been a huge success, with over seven thousand people alone 'engaging' with the audio guide, never mind actually just looking at the brilliant photos of Salford and Manchester.

This weekend, 22nd and 23rd July, between 10:30am and 4:30pm, visitors are being asked select an image and make a three minute audio recording, sharing whatever the photo triggers, which could end up in the official audio guide to the exhibition.

Full details here...

 



written and produced by Salfordians for Salfordians
with attitude and love xxx