There was disappointment for writer and actress Georgina Barley in April this year when the planned run of her debut play Lovesick at London’s White Bear Theatre was cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic, but six months later a new ‘Covid edit’ version of the piece is back in the venue’s programme, directed by Helen Tennison and running from 13-17 October 2020.
“I didn’t ask for this feeling. It’s invasive, it’s infectious, I don’t want it, so I’m asking you – very politely – to medicate me.”
Sarah needed a heart transplant. Maggie was her surgeon. The operation ran smoothly, but there are now complications…
Barley, who also plays Sarah in the piece opposite Lesley Ann Acheson as Maggie, has distilled the essence of her full-length play and delivered it in one concentrated shot – fewer characters and a shorter one-hour running time – but the heart of this tale of identity and transformation is still intact.
In Lovesick the relationship between patient, surgeon and donor is laid out on the operating table, ready for dissection. How to face death, and come out the other side. How to find your true self in a body with foreign parts. And how heartbreak and lovesickness – with no known cure – can make you grow. This is heightened, raw, emotional storytelling.
The production of Lovesick at the White Bear Theatre, Kennington is presented by Disturb The Universe Theatre Company.
Georgina Barley (writer, producer, playing the role of Sarah) is an Australian actor and writer who trained at the Drama Studio London and the National Youth Theatre. Lovesick is her debut play.
Recent theatre credits include: Caliban in The Tempest and Roger in Lord of the Flies (Lazarus Theatre Company); Lady Macbeth in Macbeth and Guiderius in Cymbeline (Cambridge Shakespeare Festival); The Snow Queen at Christmas at Kew (Walking Theatre Company). Barley played Reema in the short film The Taping (Murphy Ra Entertainment – Winner: Best Ensemble, LA Film Awards 2019) and performed in a worldwide music video for the classical pianist Lang Lang.
Lesley Ann Acheson (Maggie) trained at the Drama Studio London. Theatre credits include Des in North Street (Theatre 503), Lady Henry in The Picture of Dorian Gray (Pleasance and King’s Head Theatre), Ilse in Spring Awakening and Beth in Merrily We Roll Along (Edinburgh Fringe), and two Rep seasons with classics such as Eva in Absurd Person Singular, Betty in Funny Money, Simone in A Bedfull of Foreigners and Dee in The Business of Murder.
Lesley recently filmed the lead of Niamh in Omey in association with Screen Ireland, and shortlisted as a comedy writer for the Funny Women Awards.
Helen Tennison (director) has worked across classics, new writing, site-specific theatre, devising and physical theatre. She was the Head of the Two Year Acting Course at the Drama Studio London, 2015-17.
Recent directing credits include Everything I See I Swallow, (Winner of the Edinburgh Fringe First Award 2019), as well as several site-specific productions for Creation Theatre and numerous Shakespeare productions for Honey-Tongued/Midsummer Scene. Tennison has also worked for the Oxford Playhouse, Theatre Royal Winchester, Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, Southwark Playhouse, Rosemary Branch, BAC, ICA, Old Vic, Barefeat Physical Theatre (artistic director) and Shakespeare’s Globe. Tennison recently created Theatre Foundry, running workshops designed to empower emerging creatives.