Theatre: Mind The Gap, Arc Theatre, Trowbridge 4th – 5th July

MIND THE GAP 

This original piece of theatre written by the cast of Characters Stage Company, the Bristol Old Vic, writer in residence, Tom Wainwright, and directed by Sara Griffiths, is acted entirely by a cast of young people. The insightful play deals with both the future and the past; the old are forgotten and the young don’t know how to be. It challenges the notion that old people are out of touch, and by bringing the generations together collectively, together they try to work out the meaning of life, whilst on the cusp of death or with an uncertain future ahead.

The play runs continuously for an hour and quarter, and storyboards the ups and downs of the opposites, who find themselves thrown together, needing to make sense of a world that offers little hope for either generation.

It creates political dialogue and airs common debates raging within the voices of both the young and old. The comic highlight of the play is the wonderful Olive (played by Olivia Walker) and Betty (Isabella Senior), who sit at the back chuntering amusingly away, innocently observing the unfolding storyline.

There are great performances from all the cast; but stand-outs are elderly, war veteran Gerald, (played by Gareth Powell), the hapless Fred (Fin Griffin), disillusioned care worker, Caroline (Izzy Pittman), as well as teenagers Alex (Holly Masson) and Krissie (Kaleisha Standen), whose incredible acappella rendition mid play is haunting and melodic. The youngest cast member, Amy Di Marco, aged 10, gives a remarkable performance as Aggie, a feisty elderly woman, dramatically outing the unspoken truth with her hard hitting line; ‘we’re all going to die-soon!” If you want a thought provoking evening, with moments of laughter and sadness, then ‘Mind The Gap’ is not to be missed.

Mind The Gap low res

Mind The Gap:

The action takes place in a care home, where a small group of teenagers on the run from the police seek refuge. Unwittingly stuck together for a couple of hours, the elderly residents and the teenagers are forced to get to know each other. The characters relate stories from their past, or about their own lives and gradually come to realise that the generation ‘gap’ is not the gulf they originally thought. The play starts off with heightened comedy, but this is stripped away to reveal the real issues and dilemmas that each of them face, or have faced in their lives. Finally, a surprising truth is revealed in the plays’ dramatic and poignant conclusion. This play will appeal to everyone aged from 10 to 100 years old.

Characters Stage Company which this year comprises a cast of 21 young people aged 10-20 have been working over the last few months with professional director, Sara Griffiths and writer-in-residence at the Bristol Old Vic, Tom Wainwright, to devise an original play for performance at The Arc Theatre on Saturday July 4th  (7pm performance) and Sunday July 5th (3.30pm matinee and 7pm performance). Age guide 10 years to 100 plus.

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