Tatchell to hold Q&A after performance of play about gay spy

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A groundbreaking play about gays by acclaimed write John Osborne will be performed in London later this month.

A Patriot for Me caused a sensation when it was first performed in 1965.

It tells the true story of an Austro-Hungarian soldier at the turn of the 20th century, working up through the ranks while battling with his homosexuality.

The Lord Chamberlain, who still had powers to censor the theatre, only allowed it to be performed to private members’ clubs.

Gay rights activist Peter Tatchell will hold a question and answer session after a peformance of the play at The New Players Theatre on Thursday 30th October.

Mr Tatchell, who is the Green Party’s parliamentary candidate for Oxford East, will “offer a perspective on the cultural changes since the play was written, and the still unequal status of LGBT people in contemporary Britain.”

Despite the controversy, A Patriot for Me went on to win the Evening Standard Best Play of The Year. It crossed new boundaries in the representation of gay lives and loves.

This revival is directed by David Harris.

The play is based on the life of Alfred Redl, an Austrian officer who rose to head the counter-intelligence in Austria-Hungary despite also spying for their enemies, the Russians.

His homosexuality was used to blackmail him into giving inaccurate estimates of Russian troop strength, which led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of his countrymen in World War One.

For more information visit The New Players Theatre website or call the box office on 020 7478 0135. Tickets cost £20 (£15 concessions).