If you ever get an opportunity to attend a production by the National Youth Theatre, I suggest you go, as I’m yet to see a production that was mediocre or disappointed in any way.
This show, as the title suggests is about consent, and on reading the synopsis, I had it all worked out in my head how I assumed the plot would play out, but of course, I forgot that this was a NYT production and it was likely to be full of surprises ? They do like to keep the audience on their toes!
The Synopsis (Quoted from the Soho Theatre website)
As Head of Year 11, Diane is meant to be implementing the new ‘Healthy Relationships’ curriculum. But then Freddie arrives. She hasn’t seen him since that night six years earlier when he was fifteen.
She thinks he took advantage of her. He thinks she groomed him for months. Neither is sure. But when it comes to sex and consent, are there really any blurred lines?
For such a serious topic, the script is very entertaining, with mix of song, dance, rap and comedy moments interwoven into the serious acting scenes. Have a look at the trailer below to see what I mean…
The acting in this show is incredible, from the ensemble to the main characters, you get to know each and everyone individually, which is incredibly rare.
There are so many good scenes, but my personal favourites are, the opening acting scene with Diane (Marilyn Nnadebe) and Freddy (Fred Hughes-Stanton) where they meet up for the first time in 7 years and we (the audience) gets some insight into the current situation.
Another great scene, which is also totally hilarious is with Georgia (Alice Vilanculo) in a counselling session with her teacher, Mary (Laurie Ogden) trying to get advice on sexual foreplay, alongside the discussion on STI’s, and genital waxing and making it seem totally natural and normal to be asking!
There’s a truly touching scene between Freddy and his brother, Jake (Jay Maller) when they argue about the consequences of Freddy’s accusation and whether it is true or not.
The most thought-provoking scenes were the ones in the classroom with Diane and the teenagers in the classroom, discussing the ‘Healthy Relationships’ module which brings up the topics of consent, compromise, trust, the definition and specifics of grooming, underage sex, sexual assault etc… Lots of the questions, answers and points made were valid and gave much food for thought.
The other really tense scene featured Freddy with Diane’s husband, Pete ( Oseloka Obi). These two are truly fantastic actors.
Overall this play managed to educate us about the nature of the law regarding consent, as well as providing some real questions on where the lines are, like what could innocently be a “nice” gesture to be “kind” could be perceived as “grooming” depending on your relationship and status with the other person.
No spoilers here, but after all the questions, doubt and uncertainty during the play, the final scene shows us the true events, so you can make up your own mind.
Grab a ticket to this show before it’s too late, to make your own decision.
Performance Dates and Times & Tickets
Venue: Soho Theatre, Dean Street, London W1D 3NE
Dates: Monday 22 October – Friday 9th November 2018
Performances: 2pm & 7pm
Tickets: £12 – £17
Ticket Office: 020 7478 0100 or Soho Theatre