Southwark Playhouse, London – until 18 June 2017
Free from being censored or restrained, new writing can truthfully debate and respond to the now. Performed by a wonderfully diverse cast, Little Pieces of Gold showcased 9 plays in a single evening. These plays ‘opened up a dialogue’ on racial tensions, failing feminism and anti-veganist arguments. Each with a slight taste of dark comedy, several of the productions had the audience laughing into their palms and contemplating their actions.
A number of talented actors took to the stage during the evening, diverse in age, ethnicity and gender. Chris Uddoh and Edward Kagutuzi kicked off the evening with a powerful and moving tale of two brothers in trouble. Sophie Delores Jones displayed a very natural and warm performance in Rachel Archer’s Uncovered. Tracy Wiles finished off the evening with a bang, presenting her eccentric, offbeat characterisation of Mum.
The highlight of the evening was Tom Collinson’s Percy, directed by Natasha Rickman. Percy, a man in his 50’s, has dedicated his working life to one store, and one section; The Kitchen. Every item known and loved with intricate detail, Percy’s loyalty and routine is what ends up getting him into trouble with the new boss. Echoing Sarah Kane’s work, Collinson adds sections of detailed lists to the play, breaking away from the main action and allowing us to see Percy’s quirks and remarkable character. When eventually sacked, Percy takes to his beloved kitchen utensils to take away the pain. Mike Hayley’s performance of Percy articulates this characters kindness and gentle manner perfectly; drawing hope and support from the audience. Henry Gilbert does a superb job at delivering a character we instantly despise. Surprising, heart breaking and cleverly witty, Percy is beautifully directed – We would love to see a full length play developed around this fascinating character.
Following a sold-out production of Faith in April, Little Pieces of Gold set out to bring a collection of nine brand new plays to the stage from new-and-upcoming playwrights. No agenda set for the evening, writers were free to explore any topic which met a simple criteria; make brave, bold and entertaining work. The Little Pieces of Gold platform allows playwrights, directors and actors to explore and experiment with ideas before an open, accepting and supportive audience.