Brighton Magazine

The Brighton Magazine

Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Monday 01 October 2018

Gavin & Stacey Star Mathew Horne Talks Rain Man Ahead Of Starring Role @ Theatre Royal Brighton

Gavin & Stacey star, Mathew Horne, takes time out to answer questions ahead of his appearance in the forthcoming Bill Kenwright production of Rain Man, at Theatre Royal Brighton. 

When self-centred salesman Charlie Babbitt (Ed Speleers) discovers that his long lost brother Raymond, an autistic savant with a genius for numbers, has inherited the family fortune; he sets out to get "his half".

Charlie "borrows" Raymond from the institution where he has spent most of his life and the two brothers embark on a trip across America where Charlie soon discovers that Raymond is worth more than he could have ever imagined.

Inspired by the Oscar winning film, which famously starred Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman, Rain Man follows previous acclaimed Bill Kenwright productions of films to the stage such as A Few Good Men, The Shawshank Redemption and Twelve Angry Men.

Here stage and screen star Mathew Horne talks to us about playing a role close to his heart in the stage version of hit movie, Rain Man. 

Q/ For anyone who doesn't know the film, what's Rain Man about?

A/ It's a heart-warming story of love and tenderness between two brothers. It's about a 29-year-old car dealer who believes the route to happiness is money and success. He's a narcissist with a troubled past and he"s trying to keep his head above water. When his father dies, he discovers he has an autistic brother. He effectively kidnaps Raymond and they go on a road trip, where Charlie learns the route to happiness and peace is not money, success, cars and women, it"s love, family, connection and compassion.

Q/ Why did you want to be part of this production?

A/ I wanted to get back to the theatre. I'd taken a year off theatre after doing a long West End run. Then this came out of the blue. It's a film I"d studied at university and Dustin Hoffman was my favourite actor when I was growing up. I used to watch his movies religiously. When I was presented with this offer I felt both excitement and terror, because they"re big shoes to fill. But apparently not enough terror to say no. You just can"t turn down a challenge like this. 

Q/ You're playing Raymond, the autistic brother. How challenging is it to follow Dustin Hoffman's Oscar-winning performance?

A/ I want to pay homage to what he did, but I also want to bring my own ideas to it. My older brother is autistic. I've lived with somebody facing those challenges and I've also met hundreds of people with similar challenges to Raymond. Hopefully having lived it, I will bring my own unique take to the character. There may be tiny details that perhaps people won"t see but are there. With enough detail and nuance I should be able to build something that is fresh while remaining faithful to what Hoffman did in the film.

Q/ What's your Raymond like?

A/ He's the same as he was when he was 4 years old. He's a man of routine and rituals and a constant need to keep himself safe from the dangers of the outside world. 

Q/ How is seeing the story on stage different to watching the film?

A/ The heart of the story is one that I think should really be experienced live. There's something exciting and raw about being in the room with these characters. And to be in the room with Raymond is an exciting prospect for audiences because we don"t always experience people like him in daily life. 

Q/ People know you best for comic performances like Gavin And Stacey and Bad Education. Was it a deliberate choice to take on a different type of role?

A/ It was a deliberate move, yes. You do get pigeonholed in this industry. Everybody does. But it can take just one job to change perceptions. People will be surprised, but it"s not surprising to me. Because of my family, it was obvious to me. 

Q/ Are you excited about touring?

A/ I am. I toured with the Catherine Tate Show a couple of years ago. That was like a rock and roll tour though. It was unreal. This will be different. I'm pretty well travelled in the UK. I know most cities and I like travelling around. I think it's vital to get out and take your work to people outside of London. It's very easy to become institutionalised if you live and work in London, but we all need art. 

Q/ Do you have any touring superstitions?

A/ I do have a little ritual. Whenever I go into a new city, I listen to bands from those cities. It's a weird thing that I've always done since I was at university. 

Q/ Do people still think of you as Gavin?

A/ They do. It's a bit of a double-edged sword. It opened up lots of opportunities and I've also got a show under my belt that my parents loved watching. That might sound trite, but it"s really important to me. The flip side is that I am pigeonholed. People think I'm him and that's fine. I totally get it. I just have to grab with both hands the amazing opportunities that come along because of Gavin And Stacey and challenge myself. That's what I've done with Rain Man.

Rain Man plays Theatre Royal Brighton from Monday 15th October to Saturday 20th October 2018. For tickets CLICK HERE.

by: Mike Cobley




Share    


Black Deer Festival, the three-day celebration of Americana and Country, set in Eridge Park in Kent, welcomes artists from both America and also closer to home.
Pic by Emily Hyland

The Trials of Oscar Wilde, at Brighton Pavilion, in April, will reveal what happened during Wilde's trials, drawing on the original transcripts.

Yungblud & Halsey feat. Travis Barker's new track 11 Minutes follows Yungblud's early-2019 single Loner, a sneering anthem for outsiders.

The stage and screen star Mark Benton tells us about touring in David Mamet's award-winning, fast-talking drama Glengarry Glen Ross, which plays Theatre Royal Brighton, this coming April.
Pic (c) Andrew Whitton

Stereophonics have given a surprise release to new song Chaos From The Top Down. The song follows on from their latest album, Scream Above the Sounds, which reached No.2, back in late 2017.
Credit Sharon Kilgannon

Beating Jodie Whittaker to the post as the world's first female time travelling doctor, Hove resident Doctor Rosy Carrick debuted Passionate Machine, a funny, poignant, sad, and at points shocking, show at the 2018 Brighton Fringe, where it won Best New Play Award.

Led by Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts' Creative Director Laura McDermott, the venue's upcoming season is a curated selection of performance, music, a new regular cinema strand, discussion and debate.

Laying down a firm marker within London's raucous punk scene over the last couple of years, rising trio of Calva Louise have since earned support slots alongside the likes of Albert Hammond Jr, Spring King and Anteros and recently finished an extensive UK tour with label-mates The Blinders.

Brighton writer Tom Johnstone began writing his new novel, The Monsters are due in Madison Square Garden, during the 2016 US presidential election campaign, and the simultaneous rise of the 'Alt-Right'. 

As a music journalist David Sinclair had 'a growing realisation that after all the great records I'd heard and the thousands of shows I'd been lucky enough to see, that it was time to play some great music of my own.'

Across the South Coast young artists are writing their own narratives like never before, unspoiled by the noise of record label interference. 

Hastings Fat Tuesday celebrates its 10th anniversary with headline act Glen Matlock, original bassist and songwriter with the Sex Pistols, performing at three of the town's venues.
Mark Dawson Photography

American Idiot, which plays Theatre Royal Brighton, this April, is the story of three boyhood friends, each searching for meaning in a post 9/11 world.
Photo credit: Stuart Avis

Performing some of the most loved and revered music created to an impassioned audience of fans can teeter on a fine line of stupidity or bravery, especially when tackling a work as established and celebrated as Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon, writes Servants of Science founder, Stuart Avis.

Archive search

Search our archives for what's on and gone for the best of this city's theatre music comedy news and much more...







Organising a conference or event in Brighton?
See our Brighton Conference section.
Brighton web design by ...ntd