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Holding The Man

by Tommy Murphy

Directed by Jarrad West

27 September - 15 October 2022


Run time: approx. 2 hours and 30 minutes (including interval)

Content: containing strong language, sexual references and adult themes. For mature audiences. Not suitable for children. 

Winner of the 2007 New South Wales Premier's Literary Award and the 2007 Australian Writers' Guild Award (AWGIE) for Best Play


The course of teenage love rarely runs smooth, but it is a white-water adventure if you are a gay boy in an all-male school in 1970s Melbourne with a crush on the captain of the football team. Still, despite the odds, Tim and John become close and for fifteen years their relationship survives everything life throws at it – the separations, the discriminations, the temptations, the jealousies and the losses – until the only problem that love can’t solve turns up to part them.

For many Australians, Tim Conigrave’s best selling memoir about his fifteen-year relationship with John Caleo captured better than any book of the period what it was like being young and gay during the eighties AIDS crisis. Those who loved the book will find that this adaptation by Tommy Murphy transfers every ounce of honesty, humour and heart-wrenching irony to the stage. This account of a 15-year relationship that weathered disapproval, separation, temptation and, ultimately, death is a story, and a celebration, that speaks across generations, sexual preference and cultures.

"Fresh, frank and funny... a wrenchingly moving love story I defy anyone with a pulse not to relate to"

-Evening Standard

"Compelling, wrenching… unflinching, devastating, moving and funny"

-Sydney Morning Herald