Courtyard Theatre, London – until 14 October 2017
Caged into a house of wire, protected from reality, Rosa lives with her cake baking Grandma, Lily. Connecting with a young man, Niko, over the loss of their mothers – Rosa and Niko begin a sweet romance which turns bitter over time.
Playful with both words and physicality, Imagine If Theatre’s production, You Forgot The Mince, is visually exciting and emotionally provocative. After several years of research and development, Francesca Joy has created a piece of new writing which rejects typical projections of victims and one dimensional characters, instead showing the raw reality of domestic abuse. At the centre of this production is a strong minded, forceful young women who finds her self in an extremely loving, exciting and horrifically abusive relationship, both emotionally and physically.
The strong cast are able to expose the vulnerabilities of these hugely complex characters. Lily (Ursula Mohan), is a vital character to the play, as she does not allow Rosa to express her feelings about her mother and stops dead any conversation of her own, lost daughter. This lack of communication has repercussions on Rosa’s future. Prince Plockey masters the charming, unguided young man before turning into a violent and volatile boyfriend. Plockey raises the aggression to a level which is frightening yet realistic. Not only focusing on the abusive side of this relationship, moments of joy are beautifully directed by Stephen Whitson. As snow flutters across the stage in the form of broken tissue, snowball fights and snow angels paint the picture of an idyllic life.
Rebecca Brower’s inspiring set design allows the cast to travel from home, to prison and the streets of London. Each element considered, the floor arrangement suggests a prison or school playground. Small snap shots of their situations are illuminated against the wire house. Brower’s set design is not only beautiful but adds significant context to this production.
Following its run at this years Edinburgh Fringe, Imagine If Theatre is touring this production around the UK to several theatres. The cast have also been visiting prisons where the performance is followed by a workshop on domestic abuse; communication the core lesson. You Forgot The Mince is theatre with a purpose, not only entertaining or enlightening its audience but created with the intention to make a change. Hoping to develop the attitude and actions of all those who have been effected by domestic abuse, whether it be victims, abusers or onlookers.
Touring London, Birmingham, Swindon, Manchester, Wellingborough and Leeds – find You Forgot The Mince at a theatre in your town and become part of the change.