Significant Other

From 18-22 April 2017, the Pensive Federation, a London based theatre company, brought their Significant Other festival to 53two in Manchester.  Ten writers each create a ten minute play, each with a director and two actors – all in ten days. ‘The festival will provide each participant with an opportunity to challenge themselves and creates immediate, current and exciting theatre.’

Last year this was part of Oldham Coliseum’s First Break.  This year it’s the turn of 53two, which is putting on some fascinating new writing.  Pensive Federation’s mission is clear: … theatre which reflects people like you, situations you may have faced and reflective of the ordinary world around you; the magic in the mundane, the extraordinary in the everyday … the need for a connection with those around us, the instinct to love and the desire to be loved…  Each play was based on a specific item, an ‘object of affection’, a ring, an oilcan, a shirt.

And that’s very much what the ten plays demonstrate.  Rooted in relationships that reflect today’s society, dealing with issues that concern us all.  Themes of family, place, poorly paid jobs and how we conduct relationships today.   It’s quite an ask to write and rehearse a new play in such a short time and some worked better than others; to complete an entirely new play, even at ten minutes, is a huge risk and you don’t know what you will end up with.  But the quality of acting was impressive, and each play was well presented.

Highly accessible theatre, well presented, the end result is very much in line with what Pensive Federation set out to do.  Ten plays that reflect life today in different ways, really very watchable.

Theatre lover, amateur director, occasional actor, writer.

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