The Pass

Seymour-Centre-Fixed-Foot-Productions-The-PassSeymour Centre and Fixed Foot Productions will present the Australian premiere of John Donnelly’s The Pass, playing as part of the 2021 Seymour Season and Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras from 11 February to 6 March.

“Our 2021 season is all about presenting outstanding plays that are both provocative and highly entertaining,” said Tim Jones, Artistic Director Seymour Centre. “The Pass is just that: a witty, powerful and very moving account of the difficulties some elite sports people still face when reconciling their personal lives with their professional careers.”

Jason and Ade have been in the academy of a famous English football club since they were eight years old. It’s the night before the game that will change their lives forever – their debut Champions League match.

Full of nervous energy, they skip, fight, joke, tease each other… until something passes between them. One moment that will reverberate through the next ten years of their lives – a decade of fame and failure, of secrets and lies – in the high-stakes world of professional sport where image is everything.

A hit at the Royal Court Theatre in London and later adapted into a BAFTA-nominated feature film, The Pass deftly explores the corrosiveness of high-end celebrity culture and the consequences of toxic masculinity.

It shines a light on the prejudice that still runs rampant in the world of elite sport, and as Jason and Ade navigate this world for themselves, it powerfully illustrates the cost of repressing your identity, and asks what’s lost when you win.

Directed by Ed Wightman (Assistant Director on Billy Elliot The Musical and Fawlty Towers Live), The Pass stars WAAPA graduate Ben Chapple (Playing for Keeps) as Jason and recent AFTT graduate Deng Deng as Ade, alongside Cassie Howarth (Home and Away) and Tom Rodgers (RGM Productions’ and NIDA’s Starstruck: The Stage Musical).

“John Donnelly has created a thrilling and provocative play for today – The Pass is a wild, unpredictable and riveting ride and I am thrilled to be directing the Australian premiere production,” said Ed Wightman.

John Donnelly’s plays include Bone (Royal Court Theatre), Corporate Rock (Nabokov/Latitude Festival), Conversation #1 (The Factory/V&A/Latitude Festival/SGP), Songs of Grace and Redemption (Liminal Theatre/Theatre 503), Encourage the Others (Almeida Lab), Burning Bird (Synergy/Unicorn Theatre), a version of Chekhov’s The Seagull (Headlong), The Knowledge (Bush) and, most recently, The Pass (Royal Court Theatre).

“John Donnelly’s acerbically witty and horribly gripping new play tackles the topical subject of the homophobia that seems to be entrenched in the culture of football.” – INDEPENDENT

Director: Ed Wightman Featuring: Ben Chapple, Deng Deng, Cassie Howarth, Tom Rodgers Set Designer: Hamish Elliot Lighting Designer: Matt Cox Sound Designer: Daryl Wallis Movement & Intimacy Director: Nigel Poulton Dialect Coach: Benjamin Purser Stage Manager: Alex Plenge Chan Producer: Becky Matthews Associate Producer: Rachael Adamson

The Pass
Reginald Theatre – Seymour Centre, Corner Cleveland Street and City Road, Chippendale (Sydney)
Season: 13 February – 6 March 2021 (previews: 11 & 12 February)

For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Ben Chapple and Deng Deng feature in The Pass (supplied)