Life today as a teenager can be painstakingly difficult, especially in a world where pressures of wearing the right clothes, having the right group of friends and listening to the right music are rife. And not forgetting the obsessions with instant messaging 24-7, taking daily selfies, experimenting with fun filters on Snapchat and documenting everyday life on Instagram.
This digital life of millennials is brilliantly captured in Abi, a fresh new play jointly commissioned by Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch and Derby Theatre. This vibrant one-woman show explores how a fiery 15-year-old girl experiences modern society by delving into her realm of boys, family, partying, ambitions and social media, with wit and flair.
Abi plays at the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch from 4 – 22 September and transfers to Derby Theatre from 29 September – 20 October. It is written by one of Britain’s most exciting new female writers, Atiha Sen Gupta. Her credits include the TV British teen drama series Skins, What Fatima Did, her debut play which premiered at the Hampstead Theatre to critical acclaim in 2009 and Counting Stars which played at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and at Theatre Royal Stratford East.
Playing Abi is Safiyya Ingar who has recently finished filming with the BBC in Stephen Poliakoff’s period drama Summer of Rockets. Her stage credits include LAVA (Nottingham Playhouse) and Growth UK Tour (Paines Plough).
Sarah Brigham, Artistic Director at Derby Theatre is directing Abi and said, ‘Atiha is one of the most exciting new playwrights in the country and I know Safiyya will deliver a powerhouse of a performance in this one woman show which explores the heartache of growing up.’
Abi was commissioned as a contemporary response to Mike Leigh’s classic comedy, Abigail’s Party, from an original idea by Sarah Brigham. Abi runs for approximately 45 minutes and can be seen as a stand-alone piece or as a companion piece directly before a performance Abigail’s Party (4.30pm or 5.30pm) or after at 9.30pm at the Queen’s Theatre. Tickets for Abi are £12 but discounts are available for audiences wishing to see the two productions together. £8 tickets are available for Under 26s to any performance of Abi.
Audiences can book tickets for Abi by calling the Queen’s Theatre Box Office on 01708 443333 or online at queens-theatre.co.uk. The production contains some strong language and has an age guidance of 14+.