Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Rallying

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Rallying

Article excerpt

MARKING the centenary of the outbreak of World War One, the play The Two Worlds of Charlie F is at Newcastle's Theatre Royal this week.

The tour is supporting The Royal British Legion by raising funds at each performance and is performed by medically discharged military personnel, as well as professional actors.

The Two Worlds of Charlie F was the idea of Alice Driver, the then masterclass creative producer and now the executive producer of this new tour.

Her initial idea was to provide a unique work placement for serving wounded, injured and sick (WI W S) military personnel within a theatre company.

This was the first time that the MOD had allowed a theatre company access to their wounded soldiers and led to workshops and interviews with the WI W S service personnel from the war in Afghanistan, which, in turn, led to a play being created through the partnership of the Theatre Royal Haymarket Masterclass Trust, The Royal British Legion and Defence Recovery Capability, written by the award-winning poet and playwright Owen Sheers.

The play was rehearsed and performed on stage at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in London's West End for two sold-out performances.

It then went on a short UK tour, K visiting Birmingham, Cardiff and Edinburgh, and won the Amnesty International Award for Freedom of A Expression 2012. The production was directed by Stephen Rayne with the support of patron Trevor Nunn.

The other two patrons were Ray Winstone, the project ambassador, and recently retired General Sir David Richards, Chief of Defence Staff. It received five-star reviews, full houses and standing ovations wherever it played.

The Two Worlds of Charlie F is a soldier's view of service, injury and recovery. Moving from the war in Afghanistan, through the dream world of morphine-induced hallucinations to the physio rooms of Headley Court, the play explores the consequences of injury, both physical and psychological, and its effects on others as the soldiers fight to win the new battle for survival at home. …

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