by Evan Placey
‘The problem with girls like that is they ruin it for everyone.
The problem with girls like that is they give all girls a bad name.’
When a photograph of schoolgirl Scarlett goes viral, rumours spread across smartphones like wildfire and her reputation is poisoned, threatening to shatter the fragile bonds of friendship between a group of girls who have grown up together. But how long can Scarlett remain silent? And why isn’t it the same for boys?
This hard-hitting, topical play explores the relentless pressure exerted on young people by advancing technology. Specially commissioned by Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Theatre Royal Plymouth and West Yorkshire Playhouse, Girls Like That was developed through work with young people in 2013. Our production of this play is the first one undertaken by older members of Theatre Royal Youth.
‘Deserves to be widely seen by teenage audiences. And by their parents too, who will probably flinch…’ Guardian
‘A well-written, immaculately crafted and brave piece of energetic theatre.’ A Younger Theatre
Warning: Contains strong language and some adult content.
A Theatre Royal Youth Production
The dangers of technology and social media will be highlighted in a new play by Workington’s Theatre Royal Youth (TRY).
Girls Like That, by Evan Placey, was specially commissioned by Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Theatre Royal Plymouth and West Yorkshire Playhouse after working with young people in 2013.
When a photograph of schoolgirl Scarlett goes viral, rumours spread across smartphones like wildfire and her reputation is poisoned, threatening to shatter the fragile bonds of friendship between a group of girls who have grown up together.
This production marks a number of firsts. As well as being Jane Douglas’s debut as director, it is the first production to be specifically taken on by TRY’s older members, aged 16 to 18.
Jane said: “I’m really pleased I’m not a teenager growing up today with all the technology and social media pressures. I was concerned at first about some of the content in the play, but am very proud of how well the girls have dealt with it – I’m not sure I would have done so well at their age!”
Both entertaining and thought provoking the play presents a considerable challenge to the young actors and will raise awareness to the audience of some of the harsh realities of teenage life today.
Girls Like That is on at the Theatre Royal, Washington Street, Workington, from January 16 to January 19 at 7pm. Tickets are available from the Theatre Royal website http://www.theatre-royal-workington.co.uk or the box office every Monday and Wednesday from 6.45pm to 7.30pm at £7 and £5 concessions. Tickets will also be available on the door.
Preview from Times & Star
Girls Like That review – Theatre Royal Youth
Girls Like That, by Evan Placey, highlights the dangers of social media and long held prejudices about women and girls.
In this technological age that we now live in, a naked photograph of a schoolgirl is quickly circulated amongst her peer group. Assumptions about the girl’s reputation are voiced, even from people that she has known all her school life.
This thought provoking play shows that prejudices aimed at women over the years are just as prevalent now as they ever were.
Jane Douglas makes her directorial debut in this production. She said: “It has been really good, they are lovely girls. It was written for up to 24 female parts, but we had to allocate the parts between the eight girls. They did it as a team.”
The play came with little stage direction, so the cast and Jane worked together to create this.
Cast member Georgia Douglas-Brown co-ordinated the choreography in the play, which works really well and was clearly enjoyed by the actors.
At 16 to 18 the cast are of school age which makes the gritty play even more realistic.
It also provides a great opportunity for the young actors to showcase their talent and after this show I’m sure they will be considered for roles in future Playgoers’ productions.
Georgia said: “It’s been nice to do a play that’s a bit juicy. We decided to split the youth group so the younger ones can still do their fairy tales etc and we’ve found it really good for the older ones to get more links with Playgoers.”
Parts of the play are chilling and literally made me shiver, but I am assured by my 15 year old daughter that the content is topical, accurate and could be happening in a school near you.
Girls Like That is on at the Theatre Royal, Washington Street, Workington, until January 19 at 7pm. Tickets are £7 and £5 concessions and are available from the Theatre Royal website, the box office, or on the door.
Doors open: 6.30pm
Running Time: 1.5 hours
Date: Wed 16th – Sat 19th Jan 2019