Watch Now: The Finborough’s BLUEPRINT MEDEA

Julia Pascal’s play BLUEPRINT MEDEA, seen in 2019, is now available to view online for free thanks to the Finborough Theatre’s streaming initiative.

Kurdish freedom fighter Medea escapes the Turkish military and arrives at UK Border Control on a forged passport. Slipping through immigration, Medea discovers how to exist on the margins of London life. Working illegally as a cleaner in a gym, she meets Jason-Mohammed, the son of Iraqi immigrants. Their attraction results in the birth of twin boys. Medea believes that she has finally found a new home, a new family and a new life.

But when Jason-Mohammed’s father decides that his son must marry Glauke, an Iraqi cousin, Medea realises that she will lose both her sons and her safe haven in the UK.

As her whole world falls apart, she is forced to accept that she has nothing to lose by revenging herself – destroying the lives who those who have betrayed her and keeping her sons’ spirits with her forever…

Based on interviews with Kurdish fighters living in the UK, and written and directed by the first woman ever to direct at the National Theatre, BLUEPRINT MEDEA is an award-winning new drama loosely inspired by Euripides’ MEDEA, which connects the classical to the contemporary to explore eternal questions of passion, war, cultural identity, women’s freedom, sex, family and love.

The play runs approximately 90 minutes and can be viewed online until September 2nd.

Although this production is free to watch, please strongly consider making a donation to Finborough Theatre to enable it to reopen after this crisis has passed.

Watch BLUEPRINT MEDEA here


The Finborough’s SCROUNGER

Available on a very short viewing window is Athena Stevens’ fascinating play SCROUNGER, available to view from 9am on Saturday, 1 August until midnight on Monday, 3 August, and again from 9am until midnight on Monday, 31 August.

The first production of the Finborough Theatre’s 40th anniversary year, the world premiere of Finborough Theatre Playwright in Residence and Olivier Award nominee Athena Stevens’s new play SCROUNGER.

On the streets of Elephant and Castle, everyone likes to make speculations about Scrounger. She needs help, she must not be aware of the complexities of the world, she is sent from the demons to torture her mum… at least according to her Nigerian Uber driver.

Scrounger doesn’t care. A successful online personality, she’s got more power from her bedroom than anyone on the Southwark estates could dream of. She’s educated, she’s ballsy, and with a huge network of online allies, Scrounger is a woman who knows how to make change happen.

That is, until an airline destroys her wheelchair.

Inspired by real events and a lawsuit initiated by Stevens herself, Scrounger drives towards the realities of how Britain is failing its most vulnerable and the extreme cost paid by those seeking justice.

You can read my three and a half-star review of SCROUNGER here

Although this production is free to watch, please strongly consider making a donation to Finborough Theatre to enable it to reopen after this crisis has passed.

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Watch Now: The Finborough’s JANE CLEGG

The small but mighty Finborough Theatre will be releasing an archive recording of one of their shows each month for as long as they can.

London, 1913. Travelling salesman Henry Clegg has taken his wife, Jane, for granted for most of their marriage, as she endures his dishonesty, infidelity and neglect, as well as his demanding mother. But when Henry is accused of embezzling money from his firm and his latest affair is revealed, Jane realises she must finally escape her life of domestic abuse for herself and her children…only to find that for women without money and connections breaking free isn’t so easy.

Written in 1913 at the height of the campaign for votes for women, Jane Clegg premiered at Manchester’s famous Gaiety Theatre, before transferring to the Royal Court Theatre – where it was compared to Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House. Dame Sybil Thorndike created the title role and performed it all over the world, including in a BBC Radio broadcast in 1967. Unseen in London since 1944, Jane Clegg now receives a long-overdue new production, directed by renowned director David Gilmore. The Finborough Theatre has also previously rediscovered two acclaimed plays by St John Ervine, most notably his play Mixed Marriage in 2011.

JANE CLEGG by St John Ervine Presented by Andrew Maunder in association with Neil McPherson for the Finborough Theatre Performed at the Finborough Theatre, London, in April 2019

Read my 4-star review of JANE CLEGG here

Cast Mrs. Clegg | Maev Alexander Jane Clegg | Alix Dunmore Mr. Morrison | Sidney Livingstone Henry Clegg | Brian Martin Jenny Clegg | Eve Prenelle Mr. Munce | Matthew Sim Johnny Clegg | Theo Wilkinson Director | David Gilmore Design | Alex Marker Lighting Design | Richard Williamson Sound Design | Edward Lewis Costume Design | Carla Evans

The show runs 1 hour and 30 minutes and is available until Wednesday August 5th.

Although this production is free to watch, please strongly consider making a donation to Finborough Theatre to enable it to reopen after this crisis has passed.

You can watch JANE CLEGG here


Watch Now: Finborough Theatre’s CONTINUITY

Set in Northern Ireland in 2017, CONTINUITY is a forensic examination of the soul of an Irish ‘freedom fighter’. Pádraig Devlin is a dissident Irish Republican, who begins to have doubts about his commitment to The Cause after he meets and falls in love with a woman from Barcelona. Soon after meeting her, Pádraig botches three assignments in a row.

The other members of his terrorist cell decide to test the love-struck Pádraig’s commitment. Has falling in love really weakened the resolve of a man determined to re-ignite the struggle for Irish freedom, and whose Republican credentials are beyond reproach? And just exactly what kind of test do they plan to set him? And how will Pádraig react when he discovers that he’s being tested… CONTINUITY is the story of a man who begins to question everything he has ever fought for – and marks a stunning debut from a brand new playwright.

Starring Paul Kennedy and written by Gerry Moynihan, CONTINUITY is presented by Mark Stuart Flynn in association with Neil McPherson for the Finborough Theatre and was presented in 2017.

The play is 75 minutes long. The play is available until 31st December 2020.

Although this production is free to watch, please strongly consider making a donation to Finborough Theatre to enable it to reopen after this crisis has passed.

Watch CONTINUITY here


Finborough Theatre’s IT IS EASY TO BE DEAD

Award-winning playwright Neil McPherson’s IT IS EASY TO BE DEAD was produced during the centenary of the Battle of the Somme, and went on to gain multiple-award nominations, including for an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in an Affiliate Theatre. This is the first play to be made available online from the tiny but important Finborough Theatre (of which McPherson is Artistic Director).

Born in Aberdeen, Charles Sorley was one of the first to join the army in 1914. Killed in action a year later at the age of 20, his poems are among the most ambivalent , profound and moving war poetry ever written.

IT IS EASY TO BE DEAD tells the story of Sorley’s brief life through his work, blended with music and songs from some of the greatest composers of the period including George Butterworth, Dòmhnall Ruadh Chorùna, Ivor Gurney, John Ireland, Rudi Stephan and Ralph Vaughan Williams.

Unique among the poets of the First World War, Sorley’s life and work fits chronologically into the patriotic idealism of such writers as Julian Grenfell and Rupert Brooke (whom Sorley criticised for his “sentimental attitude”). Perhaps because of his time in Germany before the war, Sorley perceived the truth of the war long before his fellow writers, and anticipated the grim disillusionment of later poets such as Wilfred Owen, Isaac Rosenberg and Siegfried Sassoon.

The show runs 1 hour and 35 minutes and is available until July 7th.

Although this production is free to watch, please strongly consider making a donation to Finborough Theatre to enable it to reopen after this crisis has passed.

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