‘Meat’ / Uninhibited new play tackles sexual guilt and racism

A startling and uninhibited interpretation of one of Tennessee Williams’ most controversial short stories takes to the London stage this month. 

Meat, which tackles themes of racism, obsession and sexual guilt, shows at the Albany Theatre, Deptford from 15th to 18th November and from 22nd to 27th November at the Lion and Unicorn Theatre, Kentish Town. 

Meat is based on Williams’ short story “Desire and the Black Masseur” first published in  1948. It tells the tale of office worker Ashley, who suffers from guilt and anxiety about his repressed desires after rejecting his female boss’ advances. He falls asleep at work and embarks on a journey of self-discovery with Lloyd, his black colleague and the real focus of his passion. As his new identity emerges, Ashley’s journey turns into a dark battle for his soul. This dark and compelling tale of obsession is brought to the stage in a production which contains nudity, adult themes and strong language.

The play is a joint Rednec and Odd Man Out production. Playwright Matt Harris (Rednec) and director Vernon Douglas (OMOP) have collaborated on Meat, which they describe as “combining physicality with the traditions of the film noir influence” and “an adult exploration.”

Matt Harris is co-founder of Theatre Kit, a company in residence at the Rose Theatre Site, Southwark and is best known for his work with director Rikki Beadle Blair on ‘Venom’.

Vernon Douglas is a member of the Genesis Young Directors Programme at the Young Vic and has worked with Michael Attenborough at the Almeida and Trevor Nunn at the Royal National, amongst others.

Nicholas Clarke, recently seen in Failing narcissus (Camden People’s Theatre) and Will today ever end? (Tricycle), is cast as Ashley, while the part of Lloyd is played by Marlon Day, who has played numerous roles in theatre, film and radio productions including Blood Wedding at the Southwark Playhouse.

Tickets for both productions, which start at £7.50, are available online and directly from the Albany and Lion and Unicorn box offices:

The Albany: 020 8692 4446 or www.thealbany.org.uk
The Lion and Unicorn: 08444 777 000 or

For more details, contact [email protected]