Cardboard Citizens Announce Casting For HOME TRUTHS: A Season Of Nine Brand New Plays Exploring The History Of Housing
The award-winning theatre company Cardboard Citizens has today announced casting for its season of new work at The Bunker in London this April. Celebrating 25 years of making work with and for homeless people, the company will continue its exploration of the state of housing in nine new plays commissioned by Cardboard Citizens from some of the UK's most exciting playwrights. In addition to the plays, the company have today announced plans for a series of free events to run alongside the productions. The season runs 17 April to 13 May with press performances on 20, 21 and 22 April.
Home Truths will look back at the history of UK housing, from the Victorian housing crisis through to squatting in the 1970s, the ravages of Rachmanism in the 1950s and white flight in the 21st century. The nine plays will be split into three Cycles. Each Cycle can be seen as a stand-alone production, or alternatively audiences can take part in a theatrical sit in and watch all nine plays over the course of a day in one of two special Tri-Cycle performances.
Cardboard Citizens has been awarded a grant of £45,800 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to create the Home Truths Festival of Heritage Events. Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, the Festival will offer people a programme of free linked events designed to engage both the general public and people affected by homelessness.
Through a series of exhibitions, a walking tour, film nights, talks and workshops held in venues around London, the Home Truths Festival of Heritage Events will run from mid-April to late May, exploring how the state of housing today can be understood in the context of history; not just asking the question 'How did we get here?' but also 'What do we do next?'. The full line-up will be announced in April.
Stuart Hobley, Head of HLF London, said: "It's great that funding from National Lottery players can support Cardboard Citizens to explore the history of housing, a part of the UK's heritage that is too often overlooked. This innovative series of events will provide an important heritage context to homelessness and social housing over the last 150 years, and engage the whole community in a thoughtful discussion about how the past can inform our future."
Playwrights who have written new work for the season include: Sonali Bhattacharyya, Lin Coghlan, EV Crowe, Anders Lustgarten, Stef Smith, Nessah Muthy, Chris O'Connell, David Watson and Heathcote Williams with Sarah Woods. The productions will be individually directed by Cardboard Citizens' Founder and Artistic Director Adrian Jackson and rising star Caitlin McLeod as the season's Associate Director
Adrian Jackson is the Artistic Director and Chief Executive of Cardboard Citizens. Adrian founded Cardboard Citizens in 1991 and since then he has directed over 30 productions for the company, devising or adapting many of them, including Pericles and Timon (with RSC) The Beggar's Opera (with ENO),The Lower Depths (with London Bubble) and Mincemeat (winner of Evening Standard award). He directed his own play, A Few Man Fridays at Riverside Studios in 2012, and Kate Tempest's Glasshouse in 2013. In 2013 he wrote and directed an intervention in Elmgreen/Dragset's installation Tomorrow at the V & A. He recently directed Cardboard Citizens' touring production Cathy. Adrian also teaches the Theatre of the Oppressed methodology all over the world.
Caitlin McLeod worked as Trainee Director at the Royal Court from 2011-12 assisting Jeremy Herrin (Headlong), Dominic Cooke (former Artistic Director, Royal Court) and James MacDonald. During that period she directed three sell-out shows at the Finborough Theatre, and went on to be Staff Director at the Globe (Hamlet) and the National Theatre (Strange Interlude). She has subsequently directed shows at West Yorkshire Playhouse, Hampstead Theatre and two critically acclaimed shows in New York (And I And Silence and One Flea Spare). Last year she was selected from over 1300 applicants to be one of the inaugural Old Vic 12; a talent group supported by The Old Vic comprised of the most exciting emerging theatre-makers in the UK. This year Caitlin won a Sky Academy Scholarship to found her new company The Coterie.
Richard Galloway trained in acting at Breton Hall and most recently appeared in one man show The Life And Soul by Chris O'Connor (Red Ladder Theatre Company), other theatre credits include: The House Behind The Lines (BugLight Theatre), One Act Plays (The Plays The Thing Theatre Company) and Stones In His Pockets (Contexture Theatre). Richard has also had roles in film in The Communist (2014), The Rise (2013) and Black Dog (2013). @rgalloway86
Jake Goode's productions with Cardboard Citizens have included: Flat 4D (hostels); Woman of No Importance (schools); Crisis 25th Anniversary (Globe); The Art of Legislation (City Hall); Short Circuit (hostels); Beggars' Opera (Bridewell); Mincemeat (Jam Factory, Curtain Road, BBC Radio 3); Pericles (Collaboration with RSC); Visible (Collaboration with RSC); Timon Of Athens (UK tour); Woyzeck (Southwark Playhouse); Viewing The Property (V&A). He presents street theatre with Other Half Productions and engages young people through theatre as part of Just Play. Jake's television and music video credits include: Warehouse (Carlton) and In This Garden (The Levellers).
David Hartley's theatre credits include: The Odyssey: Missing Presumed Dead (Liverpool Everyman/ETT/Sam Wanamaker Playhouse), Henry VI Pts 1,2&3 (Shakespeare's Globe), Measure For Measure (Globe & US Tour), As You Like It (Grovesnor Park), Billy Liar (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Lovely And Misfit (Trafalgar Studios) and Cling To Me Like Ivy (Birmingham Rep). Television includes: The Amazing Mrs Pritchard, Holby City and Dr Who, all for the BBC, and Talk To Me, Kingdom and DCI Banks (ITV). Radio includes: Flare Path and Noble Cause Corruption (BBC).
Marian Haque studied at Bristol University and trained at the Drama Studio London. Her theatre credits include: Diana Of Dobsons (New Vic), Dara (National Theatre), Behind The Beautiful Forevers (National Theatre) and Roundabout/Bush Bazaar (Bush Theatre/Theatre Delicatessen). Her television credits include Black Mirror: Shut Up and Dance (Netflix/Channel 4), Doctors, Holby City and EastEnders, all for BBC. Marian has also done voice over work and had roles in film in The Long Weekend (2013) and Diary Of A Jihadi (2009).
Caroline Loncq trained at BOVTS and her theatre work includes: Broken Glass (Tricycle/Vaudeville), Scorched (Old Vic Tunnels), Kings Of Hearts (Hampstead), Duchess Of Malfi & Comedy Of Errors (RSC) and Lysistrata (Wyndham/Epidaurus). Television work includes: Lucky Man (Carnival for Sky 1); No Offence (Channel 4), The Night Manager (Ink Factory for BBC/AMC); Vera (ITV), Hooten & The Lady (Red Planet Pictures for Sky 1), Affinity (Box TV for ITV), Trial & Retribution (LaPlante for ITV), Wire In The Blood (Coastal for ITV) and The Queen's Sister (Touchpaper for Channel 4). Film work includes: I Could Never Be Your Woman (directed by Amy Heckerling for The Weinstein Company); The Affair Of The Necklace (directed by Charles Shyer for Warner Brothers) and the Prix Europa-winning Bolse Vita (directed by Ibolya Fekete for MIT Studios).
Endy McKay's theatre credits include: What Would Quentin Do? (The Bush/ADF), Ten Women (Jackdaw/Ovalhouse/Avignon Festival) and People (National Theatre). Television credits include From The Cradle To The Grave (ITV), Holby City (BBC) and Peep Show (Channel 4).
Andre Skeete has been acting for 12 years and has worked with Cardboard Citizens many times.His theatre credits include: Glasshouse (Carboard Citizens by Kate Tempest), Burst (Paper Tiger), Hospital Chapel 6am (Bread and Roses Theatre), The H Word (Shakespeare in Shoreditch Festival 2016 by David Watson), The Interview (Cardboard Citizens) and Dust (Cardboard Citzens), alongside the company's touring productions Twice and Three Blind Mice. Andre also had a role in BBC's short film Seven Dials.
Mitesh Soni was the winner of the Manchester Theatre Award for Best Ensemble for Arabian Nights (Library Theatre), Soni has been in numerous productions on stage including: Rudolf (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Coming Up (Watford Palace Theatre), Romeo & Juliet (National Theatre) and The Rise And Fall of Little Voice (Lancaster Dukes Theatre). Film and television credits include: Syriana (2005) Rise of the Foot Soldier 2 (2014) The Agency (Happy Tramp), Run (Acmey) and Threesome (Big Talk Productions). @MiteshSoni_1
Cathy Owen's theatre credits include: Cathy (Cardboard Citizens), Mother Courage And Her Children (National Theatre of Wales), This Wide Night (Clean Break, Soho Theatre UK Tour), The Last Valentine; A Chaste Maid In Cheapside (Almeida), Silent Engine (Pentabus, Fringe First Winner), Macbeth (Ludlow Festival), Edwina: A Cautionary Tale For Grown Ups (The Stadsteatern, Stockholm, BAC), Shrew'd: Taming Of The Shrew and The Tamer Tamed (Arcola). Television credits include The Bill (TalkBack Thames); Casualty; Crown Prosecutor (BBC) and The Life And Death Of Philip Night (YTV/Waller Films).
Faye Wilson trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, her theatre credits include: Medea (Rada), Stasiland (RADA) and Macbeth (KMA Productions). She has previously worked with Cardboard Citizens on workshops for Put In The Schwarzes And De-Stat It and The Cost.
As with all Cardboard Citizens productions, a proportion of tickets for Home Truths will be made available to homeless audiences at £1.50.
by Sonali Bhattacharyya
1887. Polly, 16, clashes with her mother, Ada, against the backdrop of the Victorian housing crisis. Polly is desperate to escape the slums at any cost, but Ada believes the compromises they'd have to make are too high. A story about the 'deserving poor' and the obstacles they face, whatever choices they make.
Sonali Bhattacharyya's credits include 2066 (Almeida), Twelve (Kali Theatre), These Four Streets (Birmingham Rep), A Thin Red Line (Kali Theatre, Birmingham Rep & Black Country Touring) and the South Bank Show Award nominaTEd White Open Spaces (Pentabus Theatre). She was a member of the inaugural Old Vic 12. She is developing Deepa The Saint (with Theatre 503), musical Kali's Toenail (with Theatre Royal Stratford East) and The Invisible Boy for Tricycle Theatre's Mapping Brent project.
Squat Now While Stocks Last. In the early 1970s, Heathcote Williams and friends set up an 'estate agency' to provide free accommodation for homeless people:
'A tiny oasis in the capitalist consumerist shit-hole run by bloviating wank-puddles, and the forces of awe and boredom'.
This is their story.
Heathcote Williams is a poet, playwright, author and actor. His first book, The Speakers, was published in 1964 to critical acclaim and he went on to write a selection of award-winning epic poems. Heathcote's play The Local Stigmatic, first played at the Royal Court in 1966, was made into a film by Al Pacino and his The Immortalist was produced by the National Theatre and in New York. Heathcote has written and advised on a number of feature films including Looking For Richard, Hotel, and Malatesta. He has also written extensively for radio and television, including Hancock's Last Half Hour and What the Dickens?.
Sarah Woods is Narrative Artist at Cardboard Citizens, where she works both as playwright and dramaturg. She is currently writing commissions for London Bubble, BBC Radio 4 and Birmingham Opera. Recent campaign work includes the Centre for Alternative Technology's Zero Carbon: Making It Happen project, the Fabian Society's Commission on Food and Poverty, and the Ashden Trust's Visioning London project.
Back To Back To Back
by Stef Smith
Nine months. Two couples. One building. Four people are trying to figure out their futures but with their backs against the breadline everyone is struggling to stay afloaT. White flight, fertility and inhospitality are explored in this poetic domestic drama that examines the difference between a house and a home.
Stef Smith is an award-winning playwright whose credits include: Girl In The Machine (Traverse Theatre), Human Animals (Royal Court), Swallow (Traverse Theatre), Remote (NT Connections), Tea And Symmetry (BBC Radio Scotland), Falling/Flying (Tron Theatre) and Roadkill (Edinburgh Festival). Awards include a Fringe First for both Swallow and Roadkill, with Roadkill also winning an Olivier in 2010. Stef is an Associate Artist at the Traverse Theatre.
by Lin Coghlan
In the backroom of a house in South London, residents from 2017 and 1919 find themselves struggling with similar challenges - what is home and in order to find one what might one be prepared to sacrifice? Wine is consumed, secrets confronted and the longing for a place to call one's own unites the people who shared this space a hundred years apart.
Lin Coghlan is from Dublin. She wrote her first play for Theatre Centre and has since written widely for film, television, radio and theatre, working for companies including Clean Break, where her play Apache Tears won the Peggy Ramsey Award. Her work for the stage includes The Night Garden (National Studio/ Northcott Theatre Exeter), Waking and Mercy (both Soho Theatre), Kingfisher Blue (Bush Theatre) and The Miracle (National Theatre). Her films include First Communion Day (BBC Films), which won the Dennis Potter Play of the Year Award, and Some Dogs Bite (BBC/Kindle Entertainment) which won the Audience Prize at the Nantes British Film Festival.
Put In The Schwarzes And De-Stat It
by Nessah Muthy
London. 1958. Two women, one black, one white, battle against the ravages of Rachmanism and the 'other'. Amidst fear, hate, violence and racism war is unleashed on streets of Notting Hill. Will either woman make it home?
Nessah Muthy is currently writing plays for HighTide, the National Youth Theatre, Kali Theatre and Theatre Centre. For screen, Nessah is currently under commission to BBC Drama, as part of the BBC Writers' Programme 2016/17.
Yellow Front Door
by Anders Lustgarten
Michael is one of the lucky ones. He's got the Right to Buy. The right to choose the colour of his own front door. The right to leave this dreary, dull little life behind and seek adventure. To spread his wings and become the man he always knew he could be. And he can't wait...
Anders Lustgarten is a political playwright. His play Lampedusa, about the migrant crisis and austerity, has been staged in a dozen European countries over the past year. His play The Seven Acts Of Mercy, which combines Caravaggio and 17th century Naples with 21st century Bootle, is currently running in the RSC's Swan Theatre. And his play The Secret Theatre, about Sir Francis Walsingham and the invention of the surveillance state, will play at Shakespeare's Globe this autumn. He's also a political activist who's been arrested in four continents.
by David Watson
June 1936. In a purgatorial reunion with her late husband Samuel, the philanthropist and social reformer Henrietta Barnett is asked what she would consider her greatest achievement. Her answer lies in NW11 between Golders Green and Finchley. But a trip to the 21st century might just trigger a rude awakening...
David Watson's plays include Pieces Of Vincent (Arcola/Paines Plough), Flight Path (Bush/Out of Joint) and Just A Bloke (Royal Court Young Writers Festival.) He has written extensively for community and prison companies, with work including Knife Edge (Big House), Housed (Old Vic Community Company) and Any Which Way (Only Connect.) His short plays include The Politician's Handbook (Royal Court) and You Cannot Go Forward From Where You Are Now (Oran Mor/Paines Plough.) His adaptations include Ibsen's Ghosts (Home, Manchester) and Phillip Pullman's I Was A Rat (Birmingham Rep.) For television, he wrote for three series of L8R (Actorshop/BBC), for which he won three Children's BAFTAs. He wrote the screenplay for The Hope Rooms (Rather Good Film/Bill Kenwright Productions).
by E V Crowe
It's 1946, Anna's sick and she knows what she's got. She tries to tell her husband Martin, who is back from the war, and their friend Abel and then the doctor. She had it before the little place, it got a bit better in the communist squat, then worse again in the pigsty. But no one believes her illness is real, or what it means or that you can die from it.
E V Crowe's credits for The Royal Court Theatre: The Sewing Group, Hero, Kin. Other theatre includes: Brenda (Hightide/Yard); I Can Hear You (RSC); Liar Liar (Unicorn Theatre); Doris Day (Clean Break/Soho); Young Pretender (nabokov) and ROTOR (Siobhan Davies Dance). Television includes: Glue, Big Girl. Radio includes: How To Say Goodbye Properly. Awards include: Imison Award for Radio, and Hero was part of Olivier Award-winning season in The Royal Court Theatre Upstairs.
by Chris O'Connell
A series of unforeseen events change 51 year old Lorna's life irrevocably. When she is diagnosed with terminal cancer, only days afterwards, in a freak timing of events, her landlord announces that he is evicting her and she is plunged into a world she knows nothing of. Benefits, homelessness testing, bidding for social housing.
Chris O'Connell is an award-winning writer for theatre, TV and radio. Credits include Fringe First Award winners Raw and Car (Time Out Live Award), and plays for the RSC, Frantic Assembly and the Belgrade Theatre. He is Artistic Director and writer for Theatre Absolute, which founded the UK's first professional shop front theatre in an empty fish and chip shop in Coventry city centre.