The Burning Tower and Ivy

£9.99

Thompson, Helena

27/06/2019 | Paperback |

ISBN: 9780413778277


About The Burning Tower and Ivy

The Burning Tower is a passionate defence of social housing’     The Guardian

 ‘Moving and passionate’    The Stage

Sarah and Em are best friends who grew up together in West London. Since 2017, they’ve worked hard researching their estates’ past as Living History youth ambassadors. Together they’ve prepared a presentation on the local heritage of social housing. But Grenfell’s shadow threatens the show as the performance space falls into darkness, fuses blow and Sarah starts to panic. Will a mysterious, old latecomer who keeps trying to take over prove a help or a hindrance? The Burning Tower, a new play by Helena Thompson, is an interactive dramatization of social housing’s history. Inspired by interviews with local West London estate residents, it was performed in low tech participatory productions on council estates nationwide before returning to Kensal House Estate. The award-winning company S.P.I.D. (Social Political Innovative Direct) was founded by Helena Thompson in 2005 to champion high quality community theatre on council estates. The charity works on estates throughout the United Kingdom creating youth shows, professional shows, youth films and tours. Shows bring audiences together using immersive, participatory, promenade or site-specific techniques. Prizes include Time Out Critic’s Choice, an Offie Award nomination, Fringe Report’s Best Outreach Company and ITV First Light Best Film Award. S.P.I.D. is based in the historic Kensal House Estate, ten minutes from Grenfell Tower. The charity advocates against the destruction of social housing and fights for increased investment in estates and to improve rights for those who live and work there. S.P.I.D. are proud to have raised £2.4 million to refurbish their own neglected, historic council estate community rooms. S.P.I.D. Theatre's performances of their play about the history of social housing champion investment in estates and raise the profile of this important cause. The play has been welcomed by community theatre groups and teachers and offers suitable audition pieces for young performers.

‘The tense atmosphere is subtly taken to a new level, no line is redundant’   Theatre Bubble 

‘...fresh and interesting work that we all should keep an eye on...’   A Younger Theatre

Ivy (an adaptation of The Burning Times, commissioned for BBC Radio 4) was first performed site-specifically in collaboration with Southwark Playhouse in 2016. Set in an old building that’s about to be demolished, Ivy is a green-fingered old woman who refuses to leave her squat, and whose plants seem to have hallucinogenic powers…  

Author(s)
 

Helena Thompson

Helena Thompson is an award-winning script writer and Artistic Director of S.P.I.D. Theatre. She studied playwriting at Birmingham University and English at Cambridge University, and was on the National Theatre’s attachment scheme. Her plays for BBC Radio 4 include The Burning Times (Ivy) (Radio Times’ Pick of the Week) and Superyou. Her play Arthur’s World (Bush Theatre) is published by Oberon. Her interactive experience iAm (nominated for an Offie award) toured the Arcola, Southwark Playhouse and Bush Theatre. Her plays Bluebeard’s Wives (ICA) and Open House (Riverside Studios, Time Out Critic’s Choice) are published by Plays International. Her short film High Above the Sky (ITV First Light Best Film Award) has won two distribution deals, three prizes and over a hundred festival screenings worldwide.

The award-winning company S.P.I.D. (Social Political Innovative Direct) was founded by Helena Thompson in 2005 to champion high quality community theatre on council estates. The charity works on estates throughout the United Kingdom creating youth shows, professional shows, youth films and tours. Shows bring audiences together using immersive, participatory, promenade or site-specific techniques. Prizes include Time Out Critic’s Choice, an Offie Award nomination, Fringe Report’s Best Outreach Company and ITV First Light Best Film Award.

S.P.I.D. is based in the historic Kensal House Estate, ten minutes from Grenfell Tower. The charity advocates against the destruction of social housing and fights for increased investment in estates and to improve rights for those who live and work there. S.P.I.D. are proud to have raised £2.4 million to refurbish their own neglected, historic council estate community rooms.


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