MONDAY 23 NOVEMBER 2020 THISWEEKCULTURE.COM
ROSIE POEBRIGHT AND MICHELLE ROCHE: PLAY INSIDE - OTHER MOTHERS
This week we're talking a lot about audio experiences - theatrical and otherwise - not least because since we were plunged back into lockdown I've been looking into lots of different ways to absorb quality cultural products at home.

So, no surprise that experiential podcast project Play Inside - a collaboration from Splash & Ripple and WeRebel, which recently released its first batch of short pieces 'Other Mothers' - very much piqued my interest.

To find out more about the plays, how the project came about, and their hopes for the future, I spoke to creators Rosie Poebright and Michelle Roche.

CLICK HERE to read this Caro Meets interview.

'Play Inside: Other Mothers' is available now via most major podcast platforms or at anchor.fm/play-inside.



CHRIS REDMOND: TONGUE FU - BOATBUILDING
In normal times, here at ThisWeek, it would be an unusual thing for us to cover the release of an album, given that our focus has always been on things happening live in London town. So in some ways it's quite nice that these not-normal times have given me the chance to focus on an upcoming record release by a TW favourite - the excellent Tongue Fu.

For the uninitiated, Tongue Fu create projects mixing spoken word, music, film and improvisation, bringing together poets, novelists, journalists, comics, storytellers and rappers. I spoke to artistic director Chris Redmond to find out more about the album - which is called 'Boat Building' - and what else Tongue Fu is up to.

CLICK HERE to read this Caro Meets interview.

'Boat Building' is released on 27 Nov. You can pre-order it in digital and physical formats here.
With the COVID-19 shutdown extending and expanding, we are currently tipping the best in digital culture from across the UK - including online shows from many of our favourite performers and companies that we first discovered at the Edinburgh Festival.


THREE UPCOMING THEATRICAL THINGS>>

NoMad | Greenwich Theatre | 27 Nov
Okay, let us kick off proceedings with the first of many online accessible things (for lo, we are still in lockdown and there is nothing to see in person), a livestream via Greenwich Theatre of this somewhat sad but definitely compelling-sounding one-woman play. "'NoMad' exposes the challenges faced by writer and actor Nell Hardy as she experienced homelessness and psychiatric hospitalisation. This true story takes audiences into the chaotic mind of severe mental illness resulting from trauma, while exploring the barriers to treatment and recovery in today's under-funded and fractious health and social care sector". Details here.

The Journey | Traverse Online Festival | 24-28 Nov
"When renowned theatremaker and illusionist Scott Silven returned to his home in rural Scotland, coming off the heels of a sold-out, highly-acclaimed world tour, he found himself in a place from his childhood that was, all at once, unfamiliar. Thinking about concepts of home, place and connection, Silven created a digital experience to explore this current moment of isolation and how it can positively affect our future". Another livestream for you, this time from the Traverse Theatre's ongoing online festival, which promises to be "unlike anything audiences have experienced before". More here.

In Search Of A White Identity | The Actors' Centre | 27 Nov-6 Dec (pictured)
Writer-performer Cliffordkuju Henry is the creative force behind this play, originally part of The Actors Centre's Working Class Season curated by Actor Awareness in 2019, and this week available to view via digital means. It's a piece that explores working-class identity, as well as race and masculinity: "Patrick and Mickey grew up together, so when they are both arrested during a march, why are they on opposing sides? Detained in the same police cell overnight, they are forced to face the complexity of their upbringing". For more information, see this page here.


THREE THEATRICAL THINGS ALREADY ONLINE>>

Latin American Season | The Actors' Centre | until 29 Nov
This stuff was on my list to tip earlier in the month but it must somehow have dropped off it, because it didn't get tipped. But don't despair, you still have the best part of a week to take in some of the shows you can see online as part of The Actors' Centre's Latin American Season. There are seven shows to see, though, so you'd better get a move on. I am particularly intrigued by 'Roller Coaster: An Adventure For Times Like These' by Julia Testas and 'Shaken' by Mariana Lafón, but you head to this page here and make up your own mind about what you would like to prioritise.

My Beautiful Launderette | Curve Theatre
This one's been available via Curve Theatre's website for a while now, so perhaps you've already availed yourself of it: an archive recording of 'My Beautiful Launderette', Hanif Kureishi's stage adaptation of his own Oscar nominated screenplay. But if you haven't, then now's the time. Readers of a certain age will surely be familiar with the plot, but for those of you who thus far haven't come across the iconic film, it's about young British Pakistani Omar, who transforms his Uncle's run-down laundrette into a thriving business. "After being confronted by a fascist gang, Omar recognises school friend Johnny and uses their history to diffuse the situation. As they renovate the laundrette together, love blossoms between them". Watch here.

Hope At Home | Hope Theatre | from 23 Nov (pictured)
I say this is already online, but it's literally only just happened. And not all of it will be available right away. Which may sound a little confusing, but let me elaborate: The Hope Theatre are running a digital project, 'Hope At Home', which is a five part online series of films which will premiere via the venue's YouTube channel, with each instalment being available for a week. 'My Father's Shed' by Henry Egar is the first; 'Where The Socks Go' by Somebody Jones follows on 30 Nov; 'A Moment's Peace' by Natasha Santos is released on 7 Dec; 'Almost There' by Michael Head will be with us from 14 Dec; and the appropriately themed final film, '21 Round For Christmas' by Matt Ballantyne & Toby Hampton, goes out on 21 Dec. Click here.


THREE MOSTLY MUSICAL THINGS>>

The Last Five Years | Southwark Playhouse | 26-29 Nov (pictured)
Many of you will be familiar with Jason Robert Brown's award-winning critically acclaimed musical 'The Last Five Years', which focuses on a New York-based couple and their turbulent relationship. And if so, then me telling you that this is happening is probably enough to make you want to head over and book yourself a ticket to stream it. If you're not familiar, but a fan of the musical format, then I very much recommend giving this one a try. It's got an unusual, interesting approach, structure-wise, and it has won so much praise I feel sure you won't be disappointed. See this page here for more.

Choreographer's Cut | Dance Umbrella | 24-26 Nov
Okay, well this is dance-related, not music. But you know, dance rarely happens without music, so I am allowing it and I am in charge. Anyway, these aren't performances per se but discussions with choreographers - Dimitris Papaioannou, Oona Doherty and Eun Me Ahn - about their creative process, staged as part of Dance Umbrella's digital festival. "Ever wondered how a performance evolves? Step inside the mind of a choreographer as three leading artists give an in-depth commentary on a recent work". Click here.

Fiver The Concert | Southwark Playhouse | 27-28 Nov
Back to Southwark Playhouse now for another delightful digital musical experience, which premiered back in 2019 to much critical acclaim. "Have you ever looked at a five pound note and wondered 'Haven't I seen you somewhere before...?' 'Fiver', a new musical by Alex James Ellison and Tom Lees, follows the story of a humble five pound note as it passes through the hands and pockets of people in London. Often unnoticed and obviously unaware, the fiver is present for significant moments in each person's life - whether it be an appreciation of their skills as a street performer; the start or end of a relationship; or the simple realisation that they can afford a bed for the night". Head this way.


THREE MORE THINGS UPCOMING ONLINE>>


Me And Ed | Kali Theatre | from 27 Nov
You may remember, because we told you about it a couple of weeks ago, that Kali Theatre released a number of monologues over the spring and summer for access via the internet, and that they were in the process of releasing another set for the autumn. According to the schedule I was given, the latest one - 'Me And Ed' by Atiha Sen Gupta - ought to be released this week, and right here is where I would expect it to turn up. And if you haven't taken a look at the company's spring and summer monologues, then you should. They are here and here respectively.

Stay Safe | New Perspectives | 28 Nov (pictured)
And here's something else we have recommended before, when it was on at the end of October. It's back for one night only and it's a spine chilling play delivered via the rather interesting medium of WhatsApp. "A WhatsApp group is a modern-day campfire. A place to gather, gossip, myth-make and share stories. For many parents it's a safe space to feel connected to their children's school. But is anything really safe anymore?" Click here for more.

Weirdos In Space | Weirdos Comedy Club | 27 Nov
And finally, it's what so many of you have been waiting for, because it's dark, cold and you really need a laugh. Yes, it's an online "night of comedy and chaos", with some kind of space theme and a line up of top acts, many of whom became TW favourites because we ran into them at edfringe: the likes of Ben Target, Eleanor Morton, Helen Duff, Lucy Pearman and Joz Norris. For a full list of who is involved, and to book yourself in, head to this location right about here.
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