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Wish You Weren't Here


Wish You Weren’t Here

at Soho Theatre, London

“It’s an hour very well-spent”

As we all know, sometimes less is more - and this little play falls into this category. I usually bemoan the fact that sixty-minute (or one-act) plays haven’t been fleshed out and can leave an audience yearning for more … but Wish You Weren’t Here is an accomplished piece of writing by Katie Redford.

Mum Lorna (played by Eleanor Henderson) and daughter Mila (Olivia Pentelow) are on a weekend break to Scarborough, where they used to come when Mila was a child and Nan was still alive. But Mila is now 16, has just received her GCSE results and would rather be partying with her friends back in Sheffield than hanging about arcades, Wetherspoons and the hotel room with her embarrassing mother. However, Lorna just wants to have fun - she is only 32-years-old - and longing for her lost twenties. Mila shows classic signs of teenage angst.

They love each other but somehow can’t connect no matter how they try. Two generations breathing the same air but unable to articulate their differences. So much frustration about the world, about each other, about the loss of Nan. But this isn’t a sad piece - there is a lot to enjoy and laugh at. Genuinely real performances, full of tenderness and detail, come from both actresses. It’s an hour very well-spent.

A simple and effective set, designed by Bethany Wells, allows a surprising amount of movement from a small show that has been touring the UK, with Brighton and Guildford still on the horizon after this London sojourn. Director Rob Watt has created a piece that is full of warmth, leaving just the right amount of breathing space for the two performers to fill.

Photography Chris Saunders

Writer Katie Redford

Director Rob Watt

Movement Director Kiren Virdee

Designer Bethany Wells

Musical Director Ellie Verkerk

Running Time 60 minutes

Age Restrictions 12+

Dates until Saturday 2nd March 2024

Check with the theatre for show times

Venue Soho Theatre, 21 Dean Street, London W1D 3NE

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Twitter @crucibletheatre


Future Tour Dates 7th-8th March 2024

Brighton Dome

14th-15th March 2024

Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford


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