A unique play about relationships and dreams set in the home changing room of Reading Football Club

Every football fan’s dream of swapping places with their idols on match day comes to life this July in a unique new show set in the home changing room at Reading Football Club.

Presented by South Street, The Final Whistle is a story about dreams and inheritance set in the heart of a modern-day football club. The audience takes on the role of the first team squad on match day as they live the drama of a big game. And while the show will have great appeal to football fans and particularly fans of The Royals*, The Final Whistle also tells a story about belonging, relationships and what forms us.

The Final Whistle - Reading v QPR 1939
The Final Whistle – Reading v QPR 1939

Benedict  Sandiford, who has written The Final Whistle  said: “As much as this is a story about football and being a fan, it is also a story about relationships –  about what we owe our parents and what we pass on to our own children. We can’t choose who we are or who we support and our formative experiences in childhood end up shaping us as people.  We wanted to make a show with heart that reflects the powerful bonds that football creates with our chosen club and between us as people.”

The show is an intimate experience set in the home changing room and other player facilities at Reading Football Club’s home, Madejski Stadium. The audience enter via the players’ entrance at the stadium and follow the players’ journey on the day of a big match. The audience live the highs and lows of supporting Reading FC over the decades but The Final Whistle celebrates what it is to be a fan, regardless of club.

Devised as part of Reading’s Year of Culture, Reading 2016, with the support of Reading Football Club, The Final Whistle is written and performed by Benedict Sandiford, directed by Cassie Friend (RedCape Theatre) and produced by South Street Arts Centre.

The Final Whistle is part of SITELINES, South Street’s acclaimed programme of theatre in unusual spaces. SITELINES will be putting on a month-long festival this July, as part of Reading 2016, Reading’s Year of Culture.  The programme includes original commissions, nationally recognised theatre companies and a range of very unusual theatre venues, including Reading FC’s home changing room, hotel bedrooms, the University Whiteknights campus, a post office van and a hair dressing salon, among others.

Performances take place Tuesday 19 to Saturday 23 July, 6.30 & 7.30pm (plus Sat matinees at 2 & 3 pm) . Tickets cost £12.50 (£10 concessions). Box Office 0118 960 6060 or online at www.readingarts.com


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