The Torch Theatre’s award-winning production of Grav has been adapted for television as a feature-length film and will be shown on S4C this Sunday evening.

The S4C film pays tribute to the life and times of Welsh Rugby legend and cultural icon, Ray Gravell, and will be aired on what would have been Ray’s 70th Birthday.

The film is based on the stage play, written by playwright Owen Thomas, that made its debut at Milford Haven’s Torch Theatre in 2015.

Owen and the Torch Theatre’s artistic director Peter Doran, have been involved behind the scenes in the development of the film.

Gareth J Bale, who has played Grav on stage in over 100 performances continues the role of Grav on screen.

Gareth J. Bale said: “There are elements of happiness and sadness in the drama, that is what makes it so special. You could imagine Grav saying it himself, that there were some players who wore the red jersey who were better than him – not many, but a few. But in terms of their life stories, there isn’t as much to tell, and Grav was certainly someone who wore his heart on his sleeve. The drama does look at some sad moments, moments which had a huge impact on him. But we also celebrate his life and there is a lot of comedy there too. There were peaks and troughs in his life, but that’s who Ray o’r Mynydd was.”

Since 2015, Grav has toured Wales five times, won awards both at the Edinburgh Fringe and Wales Theatre Awards, played at Ray’s home village of Mynyddygarreg, opened the 2015 Rugby World Cup and in 2018, played in both New York and Washington DC.

In 2019, Grav sold out five nights at London’s Hope Theatre, the first time the play had been performed in the English capital.

Peter Doran added: “We were approached pretty much out of the blue for permission to allow an on-screen adaptation of the play. We were very clear from the start that Owen must do the script adaptation and the Gareth play the role of screen, this was also the wish of Grav’s wife Mari and his daughters Manon and Gwennan. I’m looking forward to seeing how it adapts but it’s another chapter in the life of this incredible piece of theatre.”

Grav will air at 9pm on Sunday, September 12 on S4C. It will be in Welsh with English subtitles available. It will also be available on demand through S4C Clic, iPlayer and other platforms.