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Finding Joy: Theatre Preview

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by Tony Collins (subscribe)
I am a freelance writer specialising mainly in health and education and living in Staffordshire. Find me on Linked In
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Full Mask Production Deals With Subject Of Dementia
Dementia is the thought-provoking subject of this bittersweet stage offering from the outstanding full mask production company, Vamos Theatre. Finding Joy tells the story of a woman called Joy who is celebrating her 83rd birthday. She is feisty, loves to dance, but she is also losing her memory. Her grandson, Danny, on the other hand, is rebellious, bright and always getting into trouble. So, when Danny decides to look after his grandmother, they discover a shared playfulness and growing bond of love. But is that enough to face the undoubted challenges that lie ahead?

Finding Joy, Vamos Theatre
Finding Joy deals with the subject of dementia


The award-winning Vamos uses Finding Joy, which is being performed at the Lichfield Garrick theatre on October 26 and 27, to approach the subject of dementia with humour and humanity. Through its central characters of Joy and Danny the play addresses the issues of family bonds, facing things together, and looking for joy wherever it can be found. Finding Joy is suitable for those aged 12 and upwards. It is also accessible for hearing and deaf audiences alike. The production is supported by Arts Council England and Worcestershire County Council, and was developed in association with The Hereford Courtyard, with inspiration from movement-play specialists JABADAO.

Finding Joy, Vamos Theatre
Danny decides to look after his grandmother. Credit Graeme Braidwood


Finding Joy is a fully masked production with the cast taking on a variety of roles. Aron De Casmaker plays the part of Joy's grandson Danny, among others, while Bidi Iredale appears as Joy at 83, and Louise Mellor takes on the roles of Joy in flashback at the age of both 25 and eight - as well as Joy's daughter. The play is written and directed by Rachael Savage, with the all-important job of mask and puppet maker falling to Russell Dean. Finding Joy can be seen at the Lichfield Garrick theatre on October 26 and 27. Tickets costing from 13.50 to 16.50 are available online or by calling the box office on 01543 412121.

Forthcoming shows

Sep 27 The Seagull Theatre, Lowestoft www.theseagull.co.uk 01502 589 726
Sep 28 The Corn Hall, Diss www.thecornhall.co.uk 01379 652 241
Sep 29 The Maltings, Wells-next-the-Sea www.wellsmaltings.og.uk 01328 711 378
Sep 30 Sheringham Little Theatre www.sheringhamlittletheatre.com 01263 822 347

Lichfield Garrick
The Lichfield Garrick theatre


Oct 4-6 The Marlowe Studio, Canterbury Homepage - The Marlowe 01227 787 787
Oct 7 Prema, Uley Home - Prema 01453 860 703
Oct 11 The Richard Whiteley Theatre, Settle www.giggleswick.org.uk/rwt 01729 893 180
Oct 12 Carriageworks Theatre, Leeds www.leeds.gov.uk/carriageworks 0113 376 0318
Oct 18 Perranporth Memorial Hall Home - Carn to Cove 01872 572 121
Oct 19 The Tolmen Centre, Constantine www.tolmencentre.co.uk 01326 341 353
Oct 20 Wadebridge Town Hall www.carntocove.co.uk 01208 812 133
Oct 24 - 25 Arena Theatre, Wolverhampton Arena Theatre - University of Wolverhampton 01902 321 321
Oct 26 - 27 Lichfield Garrick Lichfield Garrick 01543 412 121
Oct 31 Rhodes Arts Complex, Bishops Stortford www.rhodesbishopsstortford.org.uk 01279 710 200

Nov 1 South Street Arts Centre, Reading www.readingarts.com/south-street 0118 960 6060
Nov 2 - 3 Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury Theatre Severn 01743 281 281
Nov 6 Guildhall Arts Centre, Grantham Guildhall Arts Centre 01476 406 158
Nov 9 Eden Court, Inverness www.eden-court.co.uk 01463 234 234
Nov 10 Lyth Arts Centre, Wick www.lytharts.org.uk 01955 641 434
Nov 14 - 15 Corn Exchange, Newbury Homepage 0845 5218 218
Nov 16 - 18 Belgrade Theatre, Coventry www.belgrade.co.uk 02476 553 055
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Why? Thought-provoking Masked Play About Dementia
When: 27 Sep - 18 Nov 2017
Phone: 01543 412121
Where: Lichfield Garrick, Castle Dyke, Lichfield WS13 6HR
Cost: Lichfield tickets £13.50 to £16.50
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