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ZOO Comes to VAULT Festival

Following a hit run at Edinburgh Festival Fringe and Theatre503 in 2018, and the publication of the play by Nick Hern Books in February 2020, Lily Bevan brings her critically acclaimed two-hander Zoo to VAULT Festival. A play about 'climate change' both in the weather and in the discussion of the female experience, our relationships to the natural world, and perceptions of a life well lived, this is a story of two complex, funny, awkward women. Both are in a mire of bosses, exes and hierarchies, both prefer animals to people, and both need to escape.

Bonnie is busy devoting her life to working at the 'Cherokee Valley Zoo and Conservation Centre'; Carol (Bonnie's best friend) lives in North Yorkshire, working with bats. Bonnie loves animals, but she struggles with people and has got caught up in some difficult gender politics at the Zoo. Carol has her own challenges: her angry ex-husband, her silent son Paul, meddling local caving groups and the South Yorkshire bat group. Bonnie gives Carol the confidence she requires to face a dark day when Paul goes missing in the winding underground caves.

Lily Bevan said, "I'm so excited to be bringing Zoo to VAULT Festival. The play is set both in cavernous animal enclosures in a Zoo and in an atmospheric cave - so the deep tunnels of Vault with be a perfect fit in terms of setting. We are thrilled be recently published by Nick Hern Books so it feels like a timely moment to bring the production we love back to life. And as extreme weather events surround us - and the female experience gains scrutiny - my play about climate change both physically and socially - feels especially relevant at the start of 2020."

Lily Bevan trained at RADA. Recent acting includes: As You Like It, Dr Faustus and ThreeMinutes to Midnight (all Globe Theatre '19) and writing/performing new play The French Welcome (also Globe). She's currently participating in Channel 4/Sonia Friedman playwriting scheme. Previous writing includes Pheasant Plucker (Underbelly/Bush Theatre, published by SamuelFrench), The Guide (Screenplay, co-written with Emma Thompson), Mock Tudor (Pleasance/Theatre 503), Café Red (TrafalgarStudios), Stephen & The Sexy Partridge (co-written with Finnian O'Neill, TrafalgarStudios). Acting includes: A Voyage Round My Father (Donmar/Wyndham's), Kindertransport (SharedExperience) and 'Silent Witness' & 'Dr Who' (BBC).

"Lily Bevan is one of the most consistently astonishing writers of her generation. She has an imagination like no other and her relationship with words is like a marriage between Flaubert and Spike Milligan" Emma Thompson

Lorna Beckett trained at LAMDA. Theatre includes: Café Red (Osip/TrafalgarStudios); Twelfth Night/Masters Are You Mad? (Grosvenor Park); Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Sheffield/Northern Stage); Miss Lilly Gets Boned (Osip/Finborough); My Mother Said I Never Should (Dukes, Lancaster); Stephen and the Sexy Partridge (Osip); Time and the Conways (National Theatre), Duet For One (Almeida Theatre). Film includes: Overhill (HutchFilms); Showreel (Inbex).

Zoo is directed by Hamish MacDougall, whose recent credits include Hammerhead (Pleasance comedy show of the year 2017) and Soothing Sounds For Baby (4 Chortle Awards, nominated for Edinburgh Comedy Award, listed in the Guardian Top Ten shows of the year) by Joseph Morpurgo (Edinburgh/Soho Theatre/UK Tour), The War Of The Worlds (Major UK Tour/New Diorama), Friend (Seabright Productions/Adelaide/Wiltons Music Hall) and The Narcissist (Edinburgh/Vaults/Amsterdam/BAC).

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