Jonathan Harvey's 1993 play "Beautiful Thing" has roundly been praised as a perfect coming-of-age tale. For critics and audiences alike, the fact that its two teenage protagonists are gay has almost nothing to do with the universal truths it uncovers.
A production of the show, starring Adam Rath and Gordon Tashjian and directed by Chris Kelly, opens at 8 p.m. tonight at Buffalo United Artists Theatre, 119 W. Chippewa St., and runs through Oct. 17.
The story centers around two teenage boys growing up in the downtrodden surroundings of Thamesmead, a working-class neighborhood in southeast London. Both come from broken homes where the notion of homosexuality is treated with more than its share of disdain.
As the story progresses, the naive teens make their way through a stilting, frustrated and ultimately touching love affair. Tinged with references to Mama Cass, shot through with a certain brand of British sarcasm and rife with cutting truths that apply to any sort of young love, the show has become an audience favorite. BUA last produced the show in 2000.
For more information, call 886-9239 or visit www.buffalobua.org.
-- Colin Dabkowski