Leaflet Cover for Attic's All Roads show

Mitcham theatre group aims to draw more audiences with new play

A play by an art company in Mitcham on the struggles of a young black couple in London will tour across the city to spread high-quality theatre to more audiences.

The Attic Theatre Company’s newest production ‘All Roads’, written by Roy Williams and directed by Anastasia Osei-Kuffour, will make its world-premiere on March 9 in Woolwich.

Attic’s vision for theatre

Attic’s joint CEO and artistic director, Jonathan Humphreys, revealed it was part of their vision to bring high-quality performances beyond central London.

“Our raison d’etre as a company is touring shows to areas where shows don’t usually tour and reach audiences that aren’t usually well-served by new theatre.

“Part of our vision for this was to make a world-premiere but build it in such a way that we can tour it to where there aren’t usually premieres by Roy Williams.

“For us as a small company, by commissioning someone like Roy, we are really able to increase the impact of the work we are doing because different audiences are interested in it.”

He said that for many people, going to such shows normally led to extra travel costs and more expensive experiences that if it was in a theatre nearer to home.

The company built partnerships with three of the venues to share the performances with their audiences alongside their existing community at their usual venue, the New Wimbledon Theatre Studio.

‘All Roads’, a moving story

‘All Roads’ is a story of a young black couple in contemporary London, dealing in a society of structured racism and overturning stereotypes.

Humphreys explained that the project came from a commission request to Williams back in 2019.

Williams, well-known in the UK theatrical scene, settled on a story that focused on the dynamic between the two youths after many drafts.

According to Humphreys, what made Williams’ works standout was his focus on character building over the use of stage effects.

He said: “He writes really character-driven, complex, nuance, brilliant and dramatic sorts of writing.”

Osei-Kuffour’s role as director was a change from Attic’s usual in-house productions with Humphreys in the position.

He said: “We felt with this that it would make a better show if someone with lived experience of some of the themes was directing it.

“Anastasia is a very accomplished director in her own right and has done some really interesting works in the last few years.

“I’ve met a few people and she stuck out as someone that I thought had a really interesting response to the play.”

The two lead cast members are Kudzai Mangombe and Tristan Waterson, whom Humphreys believed will take the limelight once the show ended.

He said: “They’re both really fantastic actors, we’re really lucky to have both of them.

“They’re what people are going to be talking about after the show.”

Where and when are the plays?

The “All Roads” performances will take place at these venues and dates:

  • Tramshed in Woolwich: March 9-11  
  • New Wimbledon Theatre Studio: March 14-18
  • Theatre Peckham: March 22-26
  • Bernie Grant Arts Centre: March 29 – April 2

Featured image credit: Attic

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