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Kali Theatre Launches SOLOS Online Monologues

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Kali Theatre launches a new series of its SOLOS monologues online. Featuring new plays written and filmed under lockdown, the series kicks off with a love vlog to Joe Wicks released on Friday 26 June. This new SOLOS series follows the success of four initial SOLOS monologues commissioned at the start of lockdown. Filmed and shared within six weeks, the initial series included pieces by Rukhsana Ahmad, Bettina Gracias, Sayan Kent, and Nessah Muthy.

Following its initial SOLOS commissions, Kali put out an open call for submissions. It invited monologues of three to five minutes responding to the Covid19 crisis, that an actor could rehearse over zoom and self-record in isolation. From over fifty monologues submitted, a panel selected pieces by Miriam Babooram, Veronica Dewan, Sarah Isaac and Kiran Benawra.

The first new release is Dear Joe..., a bittersweet comedy written by Miriam Babooram and performed by Yasmin Wilde. It is released at the end of a week that sees 'PE teacher for the nation' Joe Wicks (and his thousands of followers) stepping down to three online sessions a week as life under Covid19 moves on. It takes the form of a love vlog, chronicling a middle-aged woman's existence within and outside of lockdown.

Helena Bell, Artistic Director: 'Back in March, I wanted to find an immediate way for our Kali community to remain connected as we collectively tried to make sense of a suddenly changed world. As our imminent projects and productions fell away, it was important that we found a way to give paid work to our writers and actors. Through SOLOS we have given 18 freelance artists of South Asian descent paid work during the crisis, alongside 6 other ongoing writing commissions and 3 podcasts working with an additional 6 actors. The work is a fascinating insight into our writers' preoccupations and experiences of the world during these times.'

Friday 26 June: Dear Joe by Miriam Babooram, performed by Yasmin Wilde (Back Channel 4, Hobson's Choice Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester)

Friday 3 July: On Hold by Veronica Dewan, performed by Aasiya Shah (Kali's Sundowning, Raised by Wolves HBO Max)

Friday 17 July: The 3 P's by Kiran Benawra, performed by Komal Amin (Man Like Mobeen BBC), to mark South Asian Heritage Week

Date tbc: The Tribe by Sarah Isaac, performed by Shelley King (Coronation Street ITV)

The initial SOLOS monologues remain live, including Nessah Muthy's 20 minute special, The Last Clap (performed by Mona Goodwin) will be re-released on 5 July when a final clap is set to take place across the UK for the NHS 72nd birthday. Charting the first ten weeks of lockdown, The Last Clap follows an actor from the last round of applause from her theatre audience to the last Thursday clap for key workers after she crosses the frontline to work in a care home.

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