Playwright shares ‘moments of real sadness’ in How to Die of a Broken Heart at Battersea Arts Centre

Heartbreak and its emotional and physical effects on the body are being explored in an autobiographical one-woman show at Battersea Arts Centre this weekend.

The play is the product of three years of self-examination and explores how heartbreak can take its toll on the body, drawing from neuroscientific research to back up anecdotal evidence.

Written and performed by Femi Martin it is an emotional retelling of the relationship and break-up tales she became so accustomed to sharing with friends and family.

Ms Martin said: “It’s a very very personal show just talking about my own heartbreak and how my body responded to some of that trauma.”

Ms Martin developed the muscular condition Achalasia, where internal muscles can’t relax, following a difficult break up in 2007.

She said: “There will be moments of real sadness because I have experienced that sadness and I think I would be cheating the audience if I didn’t get right back into those moments and share that with them.

“At the same time I’m naturally a little bit of a clown so there will be other moments which are going to be funny.”

Ms Martin hopes to convey the message that, despite social expectations, there’s no need to rush to move on from a traumatic break-up.

She insists that if recovery takes time it’s okay to feel what you feel and also know that you’ll be okay.

She adds: “I hope that people will feel and leave feeling optimistic.”

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