Smiler

Richard Fry begins with a big smile and tells us how he loves them and how they light up the world. In this production he is a guy who has had a tough life, abandoned as a baby, subsequently being abused, and seeing himself as a ‘loser’. But – this show is not for a moment downbeat, as the energy and caring of the character carries us along – together with the humour and the demands of this rhymed one-man show. This very uplifting show tells a platonic love story between two men. One the narrator with a damaged past, the other the titular Smiler, who has been brain-damaged in an accident and now in a wheelchair. The two become inseparable and share very many of their lives’ pleasures together. Fry conveys with great warmth and panache the ups and downs of the relationship, and Smiler’s mother is a well-conveyed extra character.Life, however, is difficult for Smiler. The tragedy of his life is a big burden, no matter how positive a gloss his friend puts on it. These two guys really need each other – what is the most that one will be prepared to do for the other? See this show, enjoy the strength of Richard Fry’s writing and performance, experience how the most unlikely relationships can be deeply fulfilling – and be inspired.

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

The Blurb

Amnesty Award nominee, Richard Fry ('Bully', 'Killing Me Softly') returns to the Gilded Balloon with a brilliant new play about drink-driving, disability, best friends and Right Said Fred.

Most Popular See More

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £27.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Matilda the Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Book of Mormon

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Lion King

From £35.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Wicked

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Back to the Future - The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets