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Living Newspaper: Front page (Photo credit: Isha Shah)

London Theatre News Today: Monday 8 March

Hira Desai

By Hira Desai First Published 8 March 2021, Last Updated 9 March 2021

Theatre Royal Stratford East to release a new film written and performed by Rebecca Buckle

Directed by Mina Barber and videography and post-production by Ben Pugh, Hysterical! The Hilarious History Of Histeria will be available to watch for free via Theatre Royal Stratford East’s YouTube Channel and website from 12 noon on Monday 29th March 2021. Captioned, audio described and BSL-interpreted versions will be available.

Hello, my name is Rebecca and I’m a hysterical woman.

From Plato to Freud, witches to suffragettes, discover everything you never knew you needed to know about the history of hysteria. In a riotous comedy-lecture, join Rebecca (along with a puppet or two) for an eye-opening expedition into this fascinating ‘diagnosis’ and follow her own personal quest to shake off a label that has been placed on women for over 2,500 years.

Theatre Royal Stratford East Artistic Director Nadia Fall said: We’re really excited to be collaborating with Rebecca. Her story, which is rooted in her own experiences, is told with great wit whilst also shedding light on an alarming history of women being ignored, patronised and misdiagnosed. Hysterical also forms part of our ongoing ambition to champion D/deaf and disabled artists and work.

Rebecca Buckle is a writer and theatre maker based in the East of England. Her work, rooted in applied theatre practices, revolves around autobiography and the representation of marginalised communities. Particularly exploring the representations of pain and disability on stage. Central to her writing, however, is the ability to find humour in the bleakest of situations and add a layer of levity to the work she produces. Additionally, to writing and performing Rebecca works as an applied theatre practitioner and puppet maker. She is currently a creative associate for the Colchester Pride Festival.

Mina Barber is a Writer and Director and was invited to join the BBC London Voices Group in 2018 and was commissioned as part of a group of writers to write monologues for the Hear Me Now project, which was published in 2018 and presented as part of a Festival at Theatre 503 in February 2020. Most recently Mina was invited to join BBC Writersroom Drama Room 2020/2021 where her script was selected from over 3,000 submissions. Mina is also about to start a 1 year placement with BBC Children’s in house team. As a director for Theatre and Film Mina has worked with the Young Vic on the award winning playwright Ross Willis’ A Million Fuckboy Sperms as part of the Young Vic Directors Programme. She has also worked with Theatre Royal Stratford East King Hedley II, Theatre 503 and most recently in the West End as an Assistant Director on the critically acclaimed and Olivier nominated BBC comedy Upstart Crow by Ben Elton starring David Mitchell. For film Mina has directed two shorts with Slackline Productions titled I Dreamed I was Brigitte Macron and with Kick it Down Productions titled 3,800 miles both recorded during lockdown. Most recently Mina directed a production of A Dolls House adapted by Tanika Gupta at the Central School of Speech and Drama that was live recorded and will be streamed in January 2021.


Tune into our Theatre Chat Live tomorrow with Ameena Hamid

Ameena Hamid (Photo credit: Danny Kaan)

In tomorrow’s Theatre Chat Live, we’ll be continuing celebrations for International Women’s Day and will be joined by special guest, Ameena Hamid. At the age of 20, Ameena is the youngest ever female producer in the West End and we think she’s an incredible role model for future generations.

Our Theatre Chat Live series is a great way to meet like-minded theatre fans, to learn about new stagey things, to chat about your fave theatre experiences and even to meet some West End stars. Previous episodes have included special guests Louise Dearman and Oliver Tompsett, both of whom have starred in Wicked as well as Aisha Jawando who plays the titular role in Tina – The Tina Turner Musical and who recently performed on the BBC’s Musicals: The Greatest Show.  Most recently, we were joined by reality TV star and theatre enthusiast Amy Hart and Danny Kaan, co-founder of the beautiful theatrical coffee table book, Dear Audience.

If you’d like to join us, all you have to do is hop onto Official London Theatre’s Instagram channel every Tuesday from 6pm. Our social media coordinator Jess will be waiting to welcome you! And in the meantime, check out the previous episodes in our Theatre Chat Live playlist below!

The Royal Court Theatre’s Living Newspaper returns with Edition 3’s Front Page next month

Living Newspaper: Front page (Photo credit: Isha Shah)

Living Newspaper, the weekly project led by more than 60 writers and over 200 freelancers, was paused at the end of 2020 following the first two Editions due to the national lockdown.

The project will now continue on Monday 29 March with Edition 3’s Front Page available to watch live, online, at 5.30pm that day and over 15 performances of new work shared throughout the week.

The Living Newspaper experience has been re-imagined for the upcoming four editions exclusively for an online audience at home. Each weekly online edition will now be delivered to ticket holders over five days – with new content shared daily including local and global perspectives, longer form pieces, a dating column, a cartoon of the week, a weather room, an agony aunt, horoscopes, and more. Every edition will launch with a live streamed performance of The Front Page at the beginning of the week. Audience numbers for the live stream will be limited due to the nature of the collective experience where viewers can see each other on screen, so advanced booking for each edition is recommended.

A different creative team, led by writers, will take over the Royal Court Theatre to stage the new work each week which will be captured by Tea Films and shared with audiences at home. New performances can be watched Monday – Friday of that Edition’s week, and all pieces will be available to watch over that weekend and the following week, allowing ticket holders to access the work much like they might an online paper – catching up on the news and supplements when it best suits them.

Living Newspaper: Horoscope (Photo credit: Isha Shah)

Here is what’s to come:

Edition 3 launches on Monday 29 March with the Front Page performed live to an online audience at 5.30pm. Audiences are welcome to join this live experience together with cameras on, in a digital room (booking recommended). Content will then be added to the Living Newspaper online platform throughout the week with the whole edition available to watch on demand until Sunday 11 April 2021.

Writers for Edition 3 include Travis Alabanza, Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti, Nick Bruckman, Anupama Chandrasekhar, Zain Dada, Josh Elliott, Rabiah Hussain, Sami Ibrahim, Karen Laws, Eve Leigh, Chloë Moss, Anthony Neilson, Margaret Perry and Rebecca Prichard.

Edition 4 will be released from Tuesday 6 April (following the bank holiday weekend), with the Front Page performed live to an online audience at 5.30pm. Writers for Edition 4 include Bukky Bakray, Caro Black Tam, Stacey Gregg, Tanika Gupta, Ellie Kendrick, Sabrina Mahfouz, Nathaniel Martello-White, Eoin McAndrew, Caitlin McEwan, Rachel Nwokoro, Annie Siddons, Stef Smith, Ed Thomas and Michael Wynne.

Edition 5 will be released from Monday 12 April and Edition 6 from Monday 19 April 2021. Each Edition will launch with a live performance, and the edition will be available to watch fortwo weeks. Writers for these editions will be announced later in March so keep your eyes peeled!

Click here for more information and grab your tickets now.


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