West End's Cruise is like It's A Sin but with one man telling the story | The Sun

IF you loved Channel 4's It's A Sin then prepare to fall head over heels for one-man show Cruise.

If the series was not your thing, then don't bother getting a ticket for this show.

Cruise, written and performed by Jack Holden, tells the story of living through the AIDS crisis from one man's point of view to a younger gay guy answering the phones at LGBT helpline Switchboard.

It has returned to the West End for a limited second run.

Upon walking into the theatre it looked like they'd accidentally set the stage for some kind of post‐apocalyptic dystopian play rather than a quick dash through 1980s London.

When Holden started telling the story, the set slowly started to make sense.


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The dull brown tones meant all of your attention was focused onto him and the heartwrenching tale that unfolds.

Holden holds the focus of the audience using a mix of different accents and moving to different areas of the stage.

It deals with LGBTQ+ issues, meaning at points I was unsure exactly what was being referred to but the tone of the play slowly made it clear to me.

At times it is increidbly raunchy, which again harks back to It's A Sin's sex montage, but it is needed to clearly show how the chronic condition was quickly passed around.

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It tells a moment in history with heart and you feel for the characters involved as they suffer loss after loss.

Holden is captivating and has rooted his details in key venues in Soho for the 1980s including The Admiral Duncan.

That said, it takes at least 20 minutes for the play to pick up pace and the stream of conciousness narrative will leave you behind if you're not entirely focused.


Apollo Theatre, London


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