This simple ambition led to the making of a BBC documentary and the musical, first staged in Sheffield, that immediately transferred to London and became THE show on the west end and winning 7 awards including the Whatsonstage Best Musical 2018.
The show charts Jamie’s battle with school bullies and authority as he comes out as gay and tells people about his prom dress. It is also about his mother Margaret’s fiercely protective, unconditional love for her son. The show is funny and poignant by turns and has twice had its run in the heart of London’s theatreland extended. It explores universal themes of love, perseverance in the face of adversity and ultimate acceptance. It also has cracking songs, great heart, and a very funny script.
In a recent interview Margaret said: “It isn’t just about Jamie in a dress. It’s about believing in yourself and standing up for what you believe in in the face of opposition. And it asks, ‘What’s normal? Who defines normal?’ We’re all normal. We shouldn’t put anyone in a box or make them dull and grey. Some people want be in Technicolor. I still get quite emotional when people come up to me and say something nice about Jamie, because this is the acceptance that he should have had back then.”
Jamie added: “It’s a love story really, with a happy ending but it’s also about empowerment, and that really resonates with audiences – whatever and whoever they are.”
Everybody’s Talking About Jamie is screened at 7pm on Thursday 2 August. Tickets £14 (£10 for under 25s) are available now from the Eastgate Theatre on 01721 725777 or online www.eastgatearts.com