Frustrated by the 'gormless' portrayal of northern working class people, at the age of nineteen, Shelagh Delaney wrote a taboo-breaking play in just ten days. A Taste of Honey (1958) was immediately by accepted by Joan Littlewood's Theatre Workshop for its 'meaty content' about class, race, gender, and homosexuality.
It tells the story of seventeen year old Jo, whose mother, Helen, has run off with a rich car salesman. Left to fend for herself, Jo falls for a black sailor who agrees to marry her. But shortly after falling pregnant, she is abandoned once again when he goes off the sea.
Jo then meets, Geoff, a gay man who takes her in, and becomes a surrogate father. Geoff thinks he is doing the right thing when he sends for Jo's mother, but when Helen returns, all hell breaks loose.
A Taste of Honey is playing at the National Theatre until the 11th May. Tickets range from £15-£50, and there are several talks you can attend to enrich the experience.