A 17 year old actor who has Asperger’s Syndrome will be taking the lead role in Winterlight Productions’ new play, Matthew’s Passion, which has been written by Sherman Theatre’s former director Mike James.

Matthew’s Passion will be at Sherman Theatre next month and will see the young lead actor, Calum Glanville-Ellis, perform alongside familiar Welsh faces Kathryn Dimery (Mappa Mundi, Wales Theatre Company, BBC’s The Story of Tracey Beaker), Ioan Hefin (Belonging, Teulu, Gwaith Cartref, Pen Talar, Con Passionate, Pobol y Cwm) and Ri Richards (Belonging, High Hopes, Satellite City).

Mike James’s new play follows the story of Matthew, a 16 year old boy with Asperger’s Syndrome who finds religious matters bewildering at best and scary at worst. He does his level best to avoid them whenever possible, preferring the company of his beloved birds.

In the hope of firing an interest in the boy which may have a positive and calming effect on her son, Matt’s mother introduces him to a local music therapist.

From the moment he hears the strumming of its strings, Matt is hooked on the sounds of the guitar – likening it to the bird songs he knows so well.

For the lead actor Calum, this is his first professional acting role. He has been part of Sherman Cymru’s Youth Theatre since 2011 and is soon to study Performing Arts at Cardiff and Vale College. Calum, who is from Heath, Cardiff has Asperger’s Syndrome like his character Matthew.

Matthew’s Passion has been written by Mike James who was the former artistic director of Sherman Theatre from 1983- 1989 and this will be the first time that he has worked at the Sherman since then. The original score has been composed by renowned folk musicians Robin and Bina Williamson.

Directing the play is Chris Durnall (Theatr Gwent, Theatr Fynnon). He said: “With the success of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time people are becoming increasingly interested with the link between autism and extreme levels of creativity. Matthew’s Passion explores the boys inner world where nature and magic are his creed. ”

Matthew’s Passion will be at Sherman Theatre from July 24-27, 7.30pm. Suitable for ages 14+. Contains scenes of an adult nature. Tickets £12 - £20, concessions £2 off and under 25s half price. For further information and tickets please contact Sherman Theatre on 029 2064 6900 or visit