Reasons to be Cheerful

The ULTIMATE Ian Dury and The Blockheads musical

Book by Paul Sirett. Directed by Jenny Sealey.
Music by Ian Dury & the Blockheads
A Graeae Theatre Company production in association with the Belgrade Theatre Coventry

  • Time Out "Rough, ready and bloody brilliant."
  • The Guardian "The stage gives off a million volts."
  • The Sunday Times "The music is brilliant and there are moments of pure punk genius."


Celebrating the infectious music of Ian Dury and the Blockheads, REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL is a punk rock musical and gritty coming of age tale, which always leaves audiences shouting for more. Featuring Ian Dury and the Blockheads’ greatest hits including Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roll, Sweet Gene Vincent, Spasticus Autisticus and Hit Me with your Rhythm Stick this acclaimed show will fill the theatre with raucous glee.

Knock me down with a feather…

It’s 1979: Labour loses to the Tories, strikes rock the nation and Ian Dury and the Blockheads’ Reasons to be Cheerful (Part 3) climbs the charts. As the ultimate fans, Vinnie and his mates would do anything to see Dury at the Hammersmith Odeon, only the gig is sold out. But life has a habit of throwing strange things at you, and one night of frustration becomes something else entirely…

Let’s ‘ave it! Following nationwide tours, concert versions across the world and a performance at the London 2012 Paralympic Games Opening Ceremony, REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL is back on the road one last time!

‘I am beyond thrilled that our Reasons to be Cheerful gang are dusting off their DM’s and going back out on the road one final time. We will be well and truly raising the roof up and down the country with the brilliantly anarchic music of Ian Dury and the Blockheads, whose punk sentiment speaks louder than ever as we fight against the brutal cuts that Deaf and disabled people and millions of others have faced in recent years.’       Jenny Sealey, Director 

‘I’m so excited for everyone who will see Reasons to Be Cheerful for the first time on this 2017 tour, you are in for a treat. I love it – it’s energizing, it’s moving and it’s enormous fun.’  Jemima Dury

‘It is amazing to think that 37 years after Ian and I wrote Reasons to be Cheerful (Part 3), the song still has such an impact and sounds so fresh.  The respect they have for Ian’s lyrics and lust for life is undeniable. If Ian were alive I am sure he would be laughing his head off and applauding the bravura of this very talented ensemble. Congratulations and thank you to everyone involved.’  Chaz Jankel

All performances include captioned dialogue, BSL-interpreted songs and audio description.

‘Rough, ready and bl**dy brilliant’ Time Out

‘The stage gives off a million volts’ The Guardian

Age Recommendation 14+

Supported by Arts Council England

Originally produced by Graeae Theatre Company, New Wolsey Theatre Ipswich and Theatre Royal Stratford East.


National Tour (click on venue names to book tickets):

Belgrade Theatre, Coventry  8 September –  9 September

Derby Theatre  12 September –  16 September

Nuffield Theatre, Southampton 26 September –  30 September

New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich 3 October –  7 October

West Yorkshire Playhouse  10 October – 14 October

Liverpool Everyman  17 October –  21 October

Theatre Royal Stratford East  24 October – 4 November


Image gallery

  • Reasons to be Cheerful
  • Reasons to be Cheerful production
  • Reasons to be Cheerful production
  • Reasons to be Cheerful production

Image gallery

Performance schedule
  • Friday 8 September - Saturday 4 November 2017 National Tour