OFFSIDE Announced For UK Tour Of Football Grounds And Theatres
Inspired by real, untold stories from the world of women's football, Offside provides an untold commentary on the breakthroughs and limitations in women's football, exploring wider themes of inequality, self-belief and empowerment.
Written by leading poets Sabrina Mahfouz and Hollie McNish, Offside goes out on its 2nd UK tour after a highly successful run at the Pleasance for the 2017 Edinburgh Festival.
3 Centuries. 1 Goal. A glorious tale of struggle and sweat.
It is 1892. It is 1921. It is 2017. Four women from across the centuries live, breathe, and play football. Whilst each of them face very different obstacles, the possibility that the beautiful game will change their futures - and the world - is tantalisingly close. Offside is told through lyrical dialogue, poetry, and punchy prose, placing the audience on the touchline of the game of a lifetime.
The play explores the story of Emma Clarke in Liverpool 1892 - the first black professional female footballer; Lily Parr of Dick Kerr Ladies and the introduction of the FA ban in 1921, preventing women from using FA pitches; and a fictional representation of the contemporary game, explored through two characters, Mickey and Keeley.
Offside was born out of extensive research in to the history and current state of women's football, working with top women's teams, Manchester City Women's FC and Millwall Lionesses, where many players, sports scientists and others, integral to the development of the game, were interviewed to gain an in-depth insight into their world. To understand the historical context, Futures' worked with the National Football Museum (Manchester) and the Imperial War Museum (London).
In March 2017, Futures produced the first UK tour of Offside, visiting Harrogate Theatre Studio, Omnibus (Clapham), Traverse 2 (Edinburgh), The Spring Arts and Heritage Centre (Havant), The Wardrobe Theatre (Bristol), Marlowe Studio (Canterbury), Cast Second Space (Doncaster), Clifftown Theatre (Southend), The North Wall (Oxford), Contact Studio (Manchester), Cambridge Junction J2, South Shields FC (site specific performance), and Northern Stage (Newcastle). The success of this first tour secured a transfer the Pleasance Courtyard for the 2017 Edinburgh Festival.
Futures Theatre, founded in 1992, is a London based charity that promotes fairness for women and girls and celebrates their untold and extraordinary lives. Using theatre they engender social change and raise awareness of the disadvantages women and young people face in society, bringing art to communities who are often socially or economically excluded from traditional theatre experiences. Futures collaborates with skilled emerging artists to develop each project, creating opportunities for brilliant female practitioners particularly, addressing the under-representation of female talent in UK theatre and celebrating this untapped potential.
Co-Writers: Sabrina Mahfouz and Hollie McNish
Director: Caroline Bryant
Designer: Beth Oppenheim
Composer: Tom Adams
Movement Director: Diane Alison-Mitchell
Lighting Designer: Dylan Tate
8th & 9th May 2018: CARRIAGEWORKS THEATRE, Leeds
Ticket Prices: Full £12 / Concession £10
Box Office: 0113 376 0318
Tickets on sale now
10th & 11th May 2018: YORK THEATRE ROYAL
Ticket Prices: Full price £14.50 / Concession £12.50
Box Office: 01904 623568
15th & 16th May 2018: THEATRE SHOP, Clevedon
Ticket Prices: £11
Box Office: https://www.theatreshop.org.uk/offside
Tickets on sale now
18th & 19th May 2018: 53TWO, Manchester
Ticket Prices: Full £12.50 / Concession £10
Box Office: https://offside.bpt.me
24th - 26th May 2018: THE MAC, Belfast
Upstairs at the MAC
Tickets Prices: £12.50 - £18
Box Office: 028 9023 5053
29th - 30th May 2018: GOVANHILL BATHS, Glasgow
Ticket Prices: Full £10 / Concession £6
9th - 10th June 2018 - CHURCHILL THEATRE, Bromley
Performances: Saturday 7:30pm / Sunday 5pm
Ticket Prices: Full £15 / Concession £12
Box Office: 020 3285 6000
12th June 2018 - THE RIVERFRONT, Newport
Ticket Prices: Full £13/ concession £11
Box Office: 01633 656757
18th - 19th June 2018 - OXFORD PLAYHOUSE
Ticket Prices: Full £10 / Concessions £8
Box Office: 01865 305305
27th June 2018 - THEATRE SEVERN, Shrewsbury
Ticket prices: Full £16/ Concession £14.50 / Students £8 / Group 6+ discount available
Box Office: 01743281281
29th - 30th June 2018 - EAST RIDING THEATRE, Beverley
Ticket Prices: Full £12/ Concessions £11 /under 23 and full time student £10
Box Office: 01482 874050
Sabrina Mahfouz is a playwright, poet and screenwriter. Her 2016 plays are With a Little Bit of Luck (Paines Plough); Slug (nabokov); Battleface (Bush Theatre); Layla's Room (Theatre Centre) and The Love I Feel Is Red (Tobacco Factory Theatres). Her TV short, Breaking the Code, was produced by BBC3 & BBC Drama. Her poetry work includes How You Might Know Me (Out-Spoken Press); and the literary anthology The Things I Would Tell You: British Muslim Women Write (Saqi Books), which is currently longlisted for the Grand Prix Literary Associations Prize. Her play Chef won a 2014 Fringe First Award and Clean was produced by Traverse Theatre and transferred to New York in 2014. Sabrina has been the Sky Arts Academy Scholar for Poetry, Leverhulme Playwright in Residence and Associate Artist at Bush Theatre.
Hollie McNish loves writing poetry. She has published two collections Papers and Cherry Pie and one poetic memoir Nobody Told Me, of which the Scotsman suggested "The world needs this book" and for which she won the Ted Hughes Award. In 2016 she co-wrote a play Offside relating the two hundred year history of UK women's football, as well as collaborating on her second poetry album Versus with the brilliant Dutch Metropole Orkest. Hollie tours continuously across the UK and is a big fan of online readings - her poetry videos have attracted millions of views worldwide. She has a keen interest in migration, infant health and language learning and does readings for organisations as diverse as The Economist, MTV, and UNICEF. In 2017 she became the first patron of Baby Milk Action. Plum is her latest poetry collection, relating her thoughts on fruit, flesh and society from childhood to her early thirties / attempted adulthood.
Caroline Bryant founded Futures Theatre in 1992 to create theatre with women at the centre, producing work inspired from authentic female stories. Caroline has developed alliances across the arts which has inspired a varied program of new writing, combining themes of justice with creative engagement and a focus on the fulfilment of potential. In October of this year she directed the premier of Kay Adshead's new play A Cracked Plaster Sky, a piece informed and inspired by stories shared from women working in or exiting street prostitution, as part of Futures' creative engagement programme An Alternative Life. Informed by research, consultation and collaborations, Caroline's work has led to her directing 28 productions, touring to traditional and site specific spaces and to a broad audience. She has written three plays, most recently Paradise Street, inspired by local women's experience of World II and performed in an original air raid shelter.
Beth Oppenheim is a designer and political researcher. She trained as a theatre designer at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, after reading English Literature at Cambridge University. Since then, she has designed a production of The Marriage of Figaro at the Hub Theatre exploring the plight of domestic workers in Britain, and En Folkefiende for the Pleasance Theatre during Edinburgh Fringe, which posed questions about democracy and censorship. She has assisted designers Tom Piper and Tom Pye. She believes theatre should be a tool for effecting political change, and is striving to effect this change by different means in her new role as a Brexit researcher at the Centre for European Reform in London. She has also worked as an advocate and caseworker for the Hackney Migrant Centre, and as a researcher on political books.
Tom Adams is a composer and performer who has worked with among others: Daniel Bye, Polka Theatre, Annie Siddons, Miracle Theatre, Katy Schutte, Laura Mugridge, Lillian Henley and Field Trip. He is currently writing, composing and performing a new family theatre show called My Dad, the Magician, which will nationally tour this year to schools and theatres. He trained as a clown and physical performer and likes to inject this humour and energy into his creative process and final product. He is incredibly excited to be working on Offside with Futures Theatre.
Diane Alison-Mitchell is a movement director, theatre choreographer and actor movement tutor. Recent theatre credits include Roundelay (Southwark Playhouse), They Drink It In The Congo (Almeida Theatre), SOUL (Royal & Derngate/Hackney Empire) and Othello, Julius Caesar (Royal Shakespeare Company). Diane was part of the creative team for the London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony, and teaches across a number of drama schools in London.