Heroes is an moving and captivating student-written play that explores the lives of a community of immigrants living in an East London council estate. We spoke to Directors DIXIE MCDEVITT and IZZY COLLIE-COUSINS and writer CHAKIRA ALIN to find out more about this award-winning show.
What should an audience expect from Heroes?
Dixie: Firstly, an absolutely first-rate script, courtesy of Chakira! She has explored one day in the life of a community on an estate, which grapples with difficult topics deftly. You should expect lively characters, wonderful relationships and dilemmas a-plenty. The play itself will be performed with a blend of naturalism with some magical realism sprinkled in — moments that take us out of reality and into some transcendent moments filled with the inner truths of these characters. And if you hate West Ham, do NOT come. Jokes — if you can bury your loyalties for one evening you’ll be in for a dramatic treat.
Chakira: Lots of football, lots of laughter and lots of niche pop culture references (which probably reveal too much about me as a person)! We have a whole host of lovable characters but also some darker moments too. This play is a love letter to the beautiful, terrible aspects of our country and I wanted to showcase a representation of Britishness that is seldom seen on the theatre stage.
How have rehearsals been coming along?
Izzy: Fantastically! We have such a committed, cheerful cast who are a joy to work with. Plus, with Dixie at the helm every rehearsal is bursting with games, supported by detailed consideration of characterisation and intention. (She’s so good Yoel even asked if she’s been to drama school!)
On the other side of preparations, composer Coby O’Brien, lighting designer Mingyang Ni, set designer Calum Stevenson, and stage management team Siong Chen Meng and Ella Young are pulling out all the stops - hearing what they’re coming up with behind the scenes makes it endlessly exciting to see everything come together!
Without spoiling too much, what is your favourite part of the show?
Izzy: My favourite part is any time Black Sal and White Sal come on stage - they’re a hysterical duo and I cannot wait for the audience to get to know them as well as we do!!
Chakira: The central friendship between Jonno and Sol — love in its purest form, makes me feel all warm inside!