An Incomplete History of Housing Told in Nine Plays
The world premiere of a new Cardboard Citizens production, directed by Cardboard Citizens' Artistic Director Adrian Jackson and Associate Director Caitlin McLeod
Fresh from the sell-out tour of Cathy, a group of Cardboard Citz performers will squat in London's The Bunker to present a playful exploration of housing from the slums of Victorian London to the madness of London today from 17 April to 13 May.
An immersive multi-story speculation on need, greed and good intentions, Home Truths is revealed through the world premieres of nine short plays by some of the UK’s most exciting playwrights:
Sonali Bhattacharyya, Lin Coghlan, EV Crowe, Anders Lustgarten, Nessah Muthy, Chris O’Connell, Stef Smith, David Watson and Heathcote Williams with Sarah Woods. Scroll down for synopses. Check out a video with our directors here to find out more.
Each Cycle can be seen as a standalone production (three short plays per Cycle) or you can book for two or three Cycles to receive a special discounted rate. You do not need to see the Cycles in chronological order,
On two days, audiences will also be able to join Cardboard Citizens for a serious theatrical sit-in and watch all nine plays in one day as a triple bill, with a special discounted ticket rate and plenty of surprises planned…
Slummers by Sonali Bhattacharyya
1887. Polly, 16, clashes with her mother, Ada, against the backdrop of the Victorian housing crisis. Polly is desperate to escape the slums at any cost, but Ada believes the compromises they’d have to make are too high. A story about the ‘deserving poor’ and the obstacles they face, whatever choices they make.
The Ruff Tuff Cream Puff Estate Agency by Heathcote Williams & Sarah Woods
Based on the true story of Heathcote Williams and friends’ 1970s squat revolution, when profit, pinstripe suits, cocaine and shameless exploitation of the human need for shelter were swapped for community and the creation of a brand new country, Frestonia, with a brand new outlook: ‘Nos Sumus Una Familia’ – we are one family.
Back To Back To Back by Stef Smith
Nine months. Two couples. One building. Somewhere close by four people are trying to figure out their futures but with their backs against the breadline everyone is struggling to stay afloat. White flight, fertility and inhospitality are explored in this poetic domestic drama that examines the difference between a house and a home.
The Table by Lin Coghlan
In the backroom of a house in South London, residents from 2017 and 1919 find themselves struggling with similar challenges – what is home and in order to find one what might one be prepared to sacrifice? Wine is consumed, secrets confronted and the longing for a place to call one's own unites the people who shared this space 100 years apart.
Put In The Schwarzes And De-Stat It by Nessah Muthy
London. 1958. Two women, one black, one white, battle against the ravages of Rachmanism and the 'other'. Amidst fear, hate, violence and racism war is unleashed on streets of Notting Hill. Will either woman make it home?
The House With the Yellow Front Door by Anders Lustgarten
Michael is one of the lucky ones. He’s got the Right to Buy. The right to choose the colour of his own front door. The right to leave this dreary, dull little life behind and seek adventure. To spread his wings and become the man he always knew he could be. And he can’t wait…
Henrietta by David Watson
June 1936. Henrietta Barnett, social reformer and philanthropist, finds herself suddenly dead, and in conference with her late husband Samuel. What, he asks, would she consider her life’s greatest work? Her answer lies in NW11 between Golders Green and Finchley. But, as a posthumous trip down the highways and byways of 2017 proves, the best laid Garden Suburbs are often wont to go awry....
Nostalgia by EV Crowe
1946. Anna's sick and she knows what she's got. She tries to tell her husband Martin, who is back from the war, and their friend Abel and then the doctor. She had it before the little place, it got a bit better in the communist squat, then worse again in the pigsty. But no one believes her illness is real, or what it means or that you can die from it.
Grip by Chris O’Connell
A series of unforeseen events change 51 year old Lorna’s life irrevocably. When she is diagnosed with terminal cancer, only days afterwards, in a freak timing of events, her landlord announces that he is evicting her and she is plunged into a world she knows nothing of. Benefits, homelessness testing, bidding for social housing.
Home Truths is made possible with the support of Arts Council England, the Big Lottery Fund, Jerwood Charitable Foundation, The London Community Foundation, Cockayne - Grants for the Arts and The Leche Trust.