Aftermath - Part of LIFT 2010: London-wide International Theatre Festival
LIFT in association with The Old Vic, ArKtype and Amnesty International present:
Part of LIFT 2010: London-wide International Theatre Festival
The Old Vic Tunnels, 8th to 17th July at 7.45pm
PRESS NIGHT: 9th July at 7.45pm
From the award-winning producer and director of The Exonerated comes a fascinating piece of documentary theatre based on interviews conducted with 37 Iraqi civilians displaced by the war, and driven to seek refuge in Jordan.
Written by Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen and directed by Blank, a cast of nine portray the experiences of an extraordinary cross-section of Iraqi society over seven years after the US invasion; from the voice of an Imam imprisoned in Abu Ghraib to a young mother whose family was caught in a car bombing, or a Shia couple forced to flee after militia pressured them to inform on their Sunni neighbours. The result vividly brings to life the realities of wartime, its innocent victims, and the appalling carnage of conflict.
While names and locations have been changed to protect identities, 95 per cent of the text is verbatim, taken from interviews conducted by Jessica and Erik in Jordan with Sunnis, Shias and Christians in exile.
Aftermath offers an unprecedented theatrical perspective on the atrocities faced by thousands of people who were caught up in one of the largest ground attacks in recent years.
Husband and wife team Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen’s previous production, The Exonerated about the plights of six people wrongfully convicted of murder, has toured internationally. In 2005 it featured at Edinburgh Festival Fringe where it gained an Amnesty International Freedom of Expression award.
Aftermath will be performed in The Old Vic Tunnels – a series of subterranean tunnels beneath Waterloo Station.
Amnesty International believes that it is not safe to return Iraqi nationals to Baghdad and returns should only take place when the security situation has stabilised. The organisation is currently appealing to the UK Government to stop returning Iraqi nationals to the country. For more information visit, www.amnesty.org.uk/
Notes to the Editor
1. Aftermath is part of LIFT 2010 - London International Festival of Theatre, which runs from 23 June-18 July.
2. Established in 1981, LIFT, London International Festival of Theatre works with artists from across the world to find new ways of seeing the city. LIFT's rich and varied programming has presented extraordinary events in both conventional theatres and in more unusual spaces such as underground tunnels and hair salons. www.liftfestival.com
3. The UK premiere of Aftermath is presented by LIFT and The Old Vic in association with ArKtype and Amnesty International. The work was developed and produced by New York theatre Workshop. Aftermath was made possible by the generous support of the MAP Fund, a program of Creative Capital supported by Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Ford Foundation.
"A superbly staged and beautifully acted testimonial to the innocent victims of an ugly war...This wonderful piece of agitprop theatre challenges us all." Marilyn Stasio, Variety
"Graceful and gripping work...The stories unfold bit-by-bit over 80 minutes and are haunting and harrowing, but there’s also room for humour...The staging is fluid; the performances excellent across the board."
John Dziemianowicz, New York Daily News