Play about NHS paramedics to show in Hornchurch
- Credit: Andy Brown Photography
A play spotlighting the work of NHS paramedics is set for the stage at Hornchurch’s Queen’s Theatre later this month.
Funded by Arts Council England, I Couldn’t Do Your Job aims to challenge audiences to think about the people behind the uniform – it will show on January 17 and 18.
Presented and written by founders of Iceni Theatre Company, Hannah Fayers and Charlotte Blakemore, both 25 and from Braintree, the one-hour show has been created from thought-provoking interview material.
Hannah, who began the interviews in 2017 after being inspired by her paramedic dad, said lockdown provided the ideal time to revisit the recordings.
She said: “In the summer of 2020, Charlotte said she wanted to start a theatre company together, and so we revisited this idea.”
The pair, who have been friends since sixth form, are both actors by trade and Charlotte said completing the play took around a year.
A cast of six, including Hannah and Charlotte, will act out the emotionally charged verbatim interviews and although Covid will be featured, the duo did not want to make it the main point.
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Hannah said: “Covid was something that happened to paramedics who already do an incredibly hard job that is, in my opinion, underfunded and underappreciated.
“I just want viewers to come away with a real appreciation for the NHS paramedics, especially as there’s so many private ambulances and people don’t realise just how precious the NHS is.”
Charlotte agreed with Hannah and said she also wanted the play to focus on thinking about “the person behind the uniform” and how Covid has “heightened the amount of work” they already have.
She said: “There is a Covid section played towards the end of the show, rather than it being an overpowering thing throughout.”
Having performed at Queen’s Theatre for around eight years as a child, Charlotte said “It’s very nostalgic and I'm really excited to go back”.
She described securing the Arts Council England funding as “overwhelming” and added: “We are a new company and would love for people to come and support some fresh new talent.
“We are focusing on working with working class actors as that’s our background and it’s been a difficult year for the arts.”
The play aims to make audiences “laugh and cry”, according to Charlotte, who said the show will leave people walking away “having thought about things they didn’t already know”.
Tickets can be booked here: https://www.queens-theatre.co.uk/whats-on/show/i-couldnt-do-your-job/