Who Cares was a presentation of two plays by Holly Reed Macrae about young carers – Kaleidoscopic and Anti-Gravity.
Kaleidoscopic was a play about the realities of being a young carer, acted out by the young carers themselves. On a set created from cardboard boxes the young people acted out a variety of characters, at one point becoming kitchen appliances. Although there were plenty of funny bits, the message of the play was complex and a difficult realisation. The problems young carers are up against can majorly affect their lives, they’re up against a lot, battling through homework as well as their other responsibilities at home. These issues were further discussed post-show with a panel of cast members from the plays, and people who work for Carers Trust Tyne and Wear, who look after over seven-hundred young carers.
The second piece of the night was a two-hander between a mother and daughter. The story ran from the mother’s diagnosis with a progressive disease up to a time where she is deeply ill but still refusing to be consumed entirely by the disorder. The script and the acting on this piece were both stunning. Jessica Johnson as the mother (Martha) fully transformed over the course of the play, a performance that must have had her carefully observe the movements of a person living with the progressive neurological disorder she was portraying.
Both plays were vital and energetic pieces of theatre. Both were met with enthusiastic standing ovations from the supportive audience and will live on in the minds of those who witnessed them.
By Sarah Gonnet (guest blogger)