As previously tipped (See The Goss, 26 Aug 2003), the award-winning Edinburgh Festival hit which celebrates the life of sporting icon Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins will receive its London premiere in the new year. Hurricane will have a limited season at Soho Theatre from 12 January to 7 February 2004, followed by a UK tour.

The one-man show, written and performed by Richard Dormer (pictured), traces the highs and lows of the Northern Irish snooker legend. The "people's champion", Higgins left school at 15, won the Northern Ireland and All Ireland Snooker Championships at 17, turned professional at 20 and, in 1972, aged just 23, became the youngest person ever to win the world championship.

Higgins himself has endorsed Hurricane, originally produced in Belfast, saying that it accurately conveys his tortured life. He will be attending London performances on 13 and 14 January 2004.

For his portrayal of Higgins, Dormer was nominated for Best Actor at this year's TMA Awards (See News, 20 Oct 2003) and won the Stage award for Best Actor out of the 1,500+ productions at this year's Fringe festival (See News, 26 Aug 2003). Dormer also received the BBC Stewart Parker Award for new writing for Hurricane.

At Soho Theatre, the production will run concurrently with another Festival award-winner, The Riot Group's Pugilist Specialist, which is scheduled for 14 January to 7 February 2004. Following its Soho engagement, Hurricane is due to visit Nottingham, Leeds, Salford, Cardiff, Warwick, Norwich and Belfast.

The production is directed by Rachel O'Riordan and designed by Garry McCann, with lighting by John Riddell. It's presented by Martin Witts and Edward Snape.

- by Terri Paddock