We Only Clap on Thursdays PREVIEW

We Only Clap on Thursdays PREVIEW

We chat to performer, Fatima Eshani, and director, Sophie Petrie: the team behind this week's one-night stand-up show, 'We Only Clap On Thursdays!'

What is the show about?

Fatima: It’s a reflection of my time at medical school. Described by critics as “the camp version of This is Going to Hurt”.

Sophie: I think it’s more than just a reflection of Fatima’s time at medical school. The show covers Fatima’s journey to the NHS, the highs and lows of training to be a doctor during a global pandemic and clinical placements in… fucking Stevenage. Fatima has some eye-opening stories about training to become a Junior Doctor which she navigates in the same way anyone would navigate a deep, politically complex and multifaceted topic - through turning it into a joke.

I agree with the camp ‘This is Going to Hurt’ bit though. 

Why did you want to stage this show?

Fatima: If I don’t tell my med school horror stories, who will?

Sophie: I want the show to spark important conversations about the largely unspoken difficulties of working as a doctor in the NHS. There’s still so much stigma around mental health issues experienced by healthcare workers, and Fatima bravely speaks up about her experiences. 

⁠What makes this show unique?

Fatima: With a few weeks left before I’m expunged into the NHS, it’s a really unique time to reflect and capture the chaos of 6 years at University and take a look forward into how I’m feeling about the future.

What is your favourite part of the show?

Fatima: Olly Murs

Sophie: Fatima trying to be relatable with pop culture references. 

Also, the ending which is unexpected, thought-provoking and incredibly well-written!

Why should you come to see this show?

Fatima: Firstly, you want to come and support your local NHS hero. Secondly, you’ll get some behind the scenes gossip on med school. AND the show is cheaper than the NHS prescription charge!

Sophie: They say that laughter is the best medicine. I think medicine is the best medicine. But laughter can’t hurt right?

Fatima has been endorsed by some celebrities including but not limited to Niamh Howat (former Footlights President), Margaret Saunderson (current Footlights President), oh and… JAMES ACASTER (check the instagram page for proof @weonlyclaponthursdays.) 

Fatima: If you won’t take James Acaster’s word for it, I’m not sure what more I can do to convince you tbh...

Sophie: (for legal reasons we should probbaly avoid calling it an endorsement...)

⁠What should you expect when you come to see the show?

Fatima: Expect chaos and comedy: in the event of side-splitting laughter, be assured I am trained in first aid. 

Sophie: You woke up at 8am, waited in a queue of 60 people and STILL didn’t get a GP appointment? Have no fear, (nearly) Junior Doctor Fatima Eshani may or may not be addressing YOUR medical problems 

Fatima: (for legal reasons I cannot offer legitimate medical advice in the show. Please seek advice from a healthcare professional.)

⁠What can you take away from the show?

Fatima: Rumour has it, by watching We Only Clap On Thursdays! you too will be awarded a medicine degree!!!

Sophie: She’s lying. Anyway, so many of us in Britain, such as myself, rely on the NHS, are incredibly proud of it, but know so little about the day-to-day struggles of the people who take care of us. I hope the audience leave having laughed a lot, but also having learned a thing or two from the stories that Fatima shares. 

⁠What have you found to be the most rewarding and/or challenging part of the production process?

Fatima: The most rewarding part has been laughing through the pain. The most challenging part has been laughing through the pain.

Sophie: The most rewarding part of creating the show has been the scripting process. It started in a room with just a whiteboard, and Fatima whittling off dozens of crazy stories (including, but not limited to, abdominal ladles, a flatmate and future doctor smearing shit on the walls, and prostate exams in abandoned buildings). Getting to the current script has been a long but really really rewarding process, with plenty of ups, downs and missed deadlines along the way. Fatima has been an incredible performer to direct, she’s open to new ideas but remains true to herself, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed collaborating with her on this project. 

The most challenging part of creating the show has been how to balance humour with the serious nature of the topic. But now, after hundreds of tiny edits, many editions of the script, and the hard work of Fatima and our incredible script editors, I’m confident that we’ve struck the right balance. 

An even bigger challenge was trying to get Fatima to spend less time posting cat memes on the WOCOT Instagram story, and more time memorising her lines. That is a challenge I’m yet to overcome. 

Don't miss We Only Clap on Thursdays! for one night only at the ADC Theatre!

We Only Clap on Thursdays!
Friday 24 May 2024, 11PM

Click here to book your tickets!