Plays by Roy Williams

Sucker Punch

Bloomsbury Publishing
Type: Text

By turns tender, shocking and funny, Sucker Punch looks back on what it was like to be young and black in the '80s and asks if the right battles have been fought, let alone won.

In the red corner: Leon Davidson - Black British champ or Uncle Tom? In the blue corner: Troy Augustus - American powerhouse or naive cash cow? Having spent their youth in the same London boxing gym, vying for the favouritism of inspirational, foul-mouthed trainer Charlie Maggs, the two former friends step into the ring and face up to who they are. Williams combines very real characters with potent, nuanced dialectics to create a tough, forceful drama of race and money.

Sucker Punch was first performed in 2010 at the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, London.

Picture of Roy Williams

Roy Williams, OBE, worked as an actor before turning to writing full-time in 1990. He graduated from Rose Bruford in 1995 with a first class BA Hons degree in Writing and participated in the 1997 Carlton Television screenwriter's course.

No Boys Cricket Club (Theatre Royal, Stratford East, 1996) won him nominations for the TAPS Writer of the Year Award 1996 and for New Writer of the Year Award 1996 by the Writers' Guild of Great Britain. He was the first recipient of the Alfred Fagon Award 1997 for Starstruck (Tricycle Theatre, London, 1998), which also won the 31st John Whiting Award and the EMMA Award 1999. Lift Off (Royal Court Theatre Upstairs, 1999) was the joint winner of the George Devine Award 2000.

His other plays include: Night and Day (Theatre Venture, 1996); Josie's Boys (Red Ladder Theatre Co., 1996); Souls (Theatre Centre, 1999); Local Boy (Hampstead Theatre, 2000); The Gift (Birmingham Rep/Tricycle Theatre, 2000); Clubland (Royal Court, 2001), winner of the Evening Standard Charles Wintour Award for the Most Promising Playwright; Fallout (Royal Court Theatre, 2003) which was made for television by Company Pictures/Channel 4; Sing Yer Heart Out for the Lads (National Theatre, 2002, 2004), Little Sweet Thing (New Wolsey, Ipswich/ Nottingham Playhouse/Birmingham Rep, 2005), Slow Time (National Theatre Education Department tour, 2005), Days of Significance (Swan Theatre, Stratfordupon- Avon, 2007), Absolute Beginners (Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith, 2007), Joe Guy (Tiata Fahodzi/Soho Theatre, 2007), Baby Girl (National Theatre, 2007), Out of the Fog (Almeida Theatre, 2007), There's Only One Wayne Matthews (Polka Theatre, 2007), Category B (Tricycle Theatre, 2009) and Sucker Punch (Royal Court, 2010). He also contributed A Chain Play (Almeida Theatre, 2007) and Sixty Six (Bush Theatre, 2011).

His screenplays include Offside, winner of a BAFTA for Best Schools Drama 2002. His radio plays include Tell Tale, Homeboys, Westway, which was broadcast as part of Radio 4 First Bite Young Writers' Festival, To Sir with Love, and The Interrogation. He also wrote Babyfather for BBC TV. He was awarded the OBE for Services to Drama in the 2008 Birthday Honours List.