A Graeae Theatre Company & Theatre Royal Plymouth co-production


  • by Jack Thorne. Directed by Amit Sharma.
  • 9 February 2016 - 13 February 2016
  • The Studio

“It’s not like riding a bike. Sex. It’s far more complicated.”

Phil and Alice are in love. Phil and Alice are healing wounds. Phil and Alice are desperate to communicate. Candid, uninhibited and visceral, this new play from the award-winning Jack Thorne is an intimate, tender portrait of loss, hurt and recovery.

Jack Thorne’s previous credits include Let the Right One In and Hope for the stage, as well as television dramas Glue, Skins, Shameless and This is England. His new play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will open in the West End in 2016.

★★★★★ The Observer, UK Theatre Web
★★★★ The Times, The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Times, Financial Times, The Stage, Time Out, British Theatre Guide

AudioDescription CAPIcon
All performances include audio description and creative captioning. Winner of the Accessible Theatre Award 2015.

Recommended for ages 16+

A co-production with Graeae and Theatre Royal Plymouth, THE SOLID LIFE OF SUGAR WATER goes on National Tour in 2016. More Information

  • Event Information
  • VENUE: The Studio

    PERFORMANCE DATES: Tuesday 9 February - Saturday 13 February 2016

    Tuesday 9 February, 7.30pm
    Wednesday 10 February, 7.30pm
    Thursday 11 February, 7.30pm
    Friday 12 February, 7.30pm
    Saturday 13 February, 7.30pm

    TICKET PRICES: Tickets £12 and concessions £10 

    View all tickets prices

    BOOK TICKETS: Box Office 0161 833 9833 / online  

    How to book

    RUNNING TIME: 80 minutes with no interval

    AGE GUIDANCE: Suitable for ages 16+. Contains scenes of an adult and sexual nature.

  • Creative Team
  • CAST
    PhilArthur Hughes
    AliceGenevieve Barr

    DIRECTOR Amit Sharma
    DESIGNER Lily Arnold
    VOICE COACH Christopher Holt

  • Accessible Performances
  • AudioDescription CAPIcon

    All performances include audio description and creative captioning.

    Winner of the Accessible Theatre Award 2015.

    The Solid Life of Sugar Water is a fully accessible show, using Graeae's signature theatrical language, the aesthetics of access, whereby access is creatively incorporated into the show.

    Download the Audio Flyer for THE SOLID LIFE OF SUGAR WATER National Tour 2016

    Download an Audio Introduction for THE SOLID LIFE OF SUGAR WATER

  • Official trailer. Includes captioning & audio description...

    In conversation with Jack Thorne...

    In conversation with cast members Genevieve Barr & Arthur Hughes...

    Cast members Arthur Hughes & Genevieve Barr on the set...

  • WINNER: Euan’s Guide Accessible Fringe Award 2015

    5-stars “Sweet and funny moments abound in Jack Thorne’s script. They are beautifully fielded by Genevieve Barr (Alice) and Arthur Hughes (Phil) who present every stage of the couple’s relationship with warmth and disarming candour.” The Observer 

    5-stars “This is the type of frank, shocking theatre that will follow you home; sitting on your shoulder and in the back of your mind for days.” Frowning 

    5-stars “Beautifully acted, stunningly designed and a show that really makes you think.” UK Theatre Web 

    4-stars “What makes this such an exciting, inspiring piece, however – aside from Thorne’s crackling words, fired back and forth between the characters as though they’re thinking in unison – is just how much it isn’t about disability…It’s nothing less than love, death and the troubled permanence of a deeply-bonded relationship.” The Scotsman 

    4-stars “Startlingly good…unflinching but generous. Grisly but lovely.” The Times 

    4-stars “Forceful, thrilling, stunning…consistently sensitive and thoughtful performances.” The Daily Telegraph 

    4-stars “Jack Thorne’s multi-layered two-hander for Graeae – about a couple grieving for their stillborn child – has no happy ever after, but is rewarding to watch…Amit Sharma’s spot-on production.” The Guardian 

    4-stars “What the piece achieves is an unflinching frankness on the subject of intimacy…Amit Sharma’s tenderly directed production.” Sunday Times

    4-stars “One of the most talked about plays at the fringe…the writing is visceral and precise.” Financial Times 

    4-stars “It’s the writing that hits you squarely in the gut – it has a real sense of precision and meter, the tone sometimes funny, sometimes filthy, sometimes hopeful, sometimes utterly devastating…Amit Sharma’s production is not always an easy watch, it’s often upsetting and wrenching, but it’s funny too and done with sensitivity and intelligence.” The Stage 

    4-stars “Genuinely moving and presents a good showcase for two talented actors under the direction of Amit Sharma.” British Theatre Guide 

    4-stars “Jack Thorne’s heartbreaking new play…[Genevieve] Barr and [Arthur] Hughes play it beautifully.”
    Time Out 

    4-stars “Funny, poignant, arresting…a complex emotional watch…heart-warming and heart-wrenching.”

    4-stars “A bold statement of both the quality of the company’s [Graeae's] work and their emphasis on ensuring that it’s accessible to as wide an audience as possible.” Broadway Baby 

    4-stars “Foremost a touching and believable love story…with strong performances from [Genevieve] Barr and [Arthur] Hughes, this redemptive, moving story is brought to life.” The List 

    4-stars “Excellent, sensitive performances in a “stunning” new play.” The Week 

    4-stars “Genevieve Barr and Arthur Hughes wring every last gasp of emotion from Thorne’s script in Amit Sharma’s beautifully unsentimental production. Just as Alice and Phil’s relationship seems to have fallen apart beyond repair, something is salvaged in this unflinchingly honest look at everyday tragedies and the healing that’s required beyond them.” The Herald 

    4-stars “A deeply affecting production…a profoundly moving play.” Three Weeks

    Highly Recommended Show “A strong production which isn’t always easy to watch but it is more than worthwhile. It is a highly recommended addition to your Edinburgh Fringe experience.” Fringe Review 

    “I spent four days at the Edinburgh Festival seeing mainly the big guns from the official festival, but the show that stood out for me was Graeae’s The Solid Life of Sugar Water…great script, acting and directing…I urge you to catch it.” Richard Wilson, Graeae Patron

    “It’s no surprise to me that the press have gone crazy for Graeae’s new production, Jack Thorne’s ‘The Solid Life of Sugar Water. I saw it just before Edinburgh and knew that this incredible, intense, brilliant production would show how assured writing, directing and acting can combine to make an onslaught of drama that holds people enthralled, and utterly wrapped up in the dramas unfolding in the lives of the characters.” Mat Fraser, Graeae Patron

  • Download the Audio Flyer for THE SOLID LIFE OF SUGAR WATER National Tour 2016

    Download an Audio Introduction for THE SOLID LIFE OF SUGAR WATER

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