Time: November 15, 2016 at 7:30pm to November 19, 2016 at 10pm
Location: Chapter Arts Centre
Street: Market Road, Canton
City/Town: Cardiff CF5 1QE
Website or Map: http://www.chapter.org
Phone: 02920 304400
Event Type: public, performances, at, chapter, arts, centre, cardiff
Organized By: Ray Thomas
Latest Activity: Oct 20, 2016
“A DAY IN THE DEATH OF JOE EGG” (Peter Nichols)
Bristol, 1967, at the end of the Christmas Term. BRI, an Art Teacher in a local Secondary School, can’t wait!
BRI and SHEILA have a 10-year-old daughter, JOSEPHINE – “Joe Egg” of the title – who is described by a Germanic doctor as “a wegetable”, in one of the “routines” her parents play out as a coping strategy. More like knockabout vaudeville, than the serious drama the play’s subject matter might lead us to expect.
Bri and Sheila refer to their own daughter as “a living parsnip” and joke that she needs an early night because her 11-plus is coming up! Joe’s condition is, in fact, an extreme form of Cerebral Palsy.
“It’s difficult to see that attitudes to extreme disability have improved much since Peter Nichols first wrote his ground-breaking black comedy inspired by the experience of bringing up his own brain-damaged daughter in the 1960s.”
Matters come to a head when outsiders, in the form of GRACE (Bri’s mum), FREDDIE and PAM (their friends), decide to visit! A fascinating exploration of the daily impact on a marriage and relationship, of parenting a child with profound disability.
“It wasn’t just that for the first time a severely handicapped child was being portrayed on stage that had people on edge, but because she was being used as part of a dark comedy. Oh, yes, the laughs are there, but they underscore a plot of such dramatic humanity, that the play couldn’t exist without them.” (Review of a 2015 production)
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