FORGET ME NOT – Bush Theatre

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Past wrongs cast long shadows. Following the passing of the 1901 Immigration Restriction Act, successive Australian governments favoured migrants from English-speaking countries in what was called the White Australia policy. Between 1945 and 1968, for example, more than 3,000 British children were sent to the antipodes and told they were orphans. They expected the sunshine of a new start; what they got was the darkness of abuse. Australian playwright Tom Holloway’s 2013 drama looks at one instance of this policy, and denounces a historical wrong while at the same time holding a family reunion story close to its heart.

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FOUR MINUTES TWELVE SECONDS – West End

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Very well-deserved West end transfer for thrilling new play about ethics in the age of the internet… How well do parents know their kids? Especially their teenage kids. Jack appears to be a nice, well-spoken 17-year-old youngster about to take his exams. You see, he has ambitions to study law at Durham University. His parents, David and Di, think he’s a normal boy and they are really proud of all of his hard work. And of his good grades. But, in James Fritz’s compelling 90-minute play, they are about to be disillusioned. And the trick is that we never get to see Jack: he remains offstage, so all we are left with is the reactions of his parents and friends.

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PLAQUES AND TANGLES – Royal Court

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Once upon a time, quite recently, you couldn’t move for plays about youth. Now, there’s been an avalanche of dramas about ageing, usually in the context of dementia and family life. Maybe all of our main playwrights have suddenly grown up, or maybe the endless quest for novelty has deposited us on the shores of the current trend-setting idea. Nicola Wilson’s Royal Court debut is yet another play about Alzheimer’s, ageing and memory, but is it any different from Florian Zeller’s The Father, April de Angelis’ After Electra or Emma Adams’s Animals?