Monday 20 May 2019

Small Island Made Me Cry ( a bit)

Showing at the National Theatre, I went along to see this much talked about play.

I immediately felt at home.

Recording studios and theatres, I just love immensely.
As the seats filled, I thought of my own writing projects, imagined filing the National with words I had crafted.
( I daydreamed... and I digress...)
The sound of the sea filled our ears until the final seat was taken, the lights went out, and the performance began.

Written by Andrea Levy, Small Island won the Orange prize for fiction back in 2005.

For anyone who hasn't read the book, please do so. I read it many years ago ... enough distance however for me to be able to watch with fresh eyes.

The stage management was beautiful, slick and effective, however it was the story that captured my heart.

It's the Caribbean migrants story, the story of a changing Britain, history and the present all rolled into one.

I cannot praise this play enough... I laughed , and as my title indicates, had times when my eyes simply welled up.
Trust me, it's emotional.

The baby born towards the end is us - it's where we took the baton.... and here we are.

Two small islands.. Britain and Jamaica collided, when subjects of the empire boarded ships to start new lives...
and the rest they history...

It's a play that leaves you with many questions - yes, but also a deeper gratitude for those who despite the hardships they faced, managed to retain their humour , compassion and dignity.
Now you don't have to be African Caribbean Black British (or however you define yourself) to appreciate this play, but if you are, you may find yourself feeling increasingly proud of your history, and your culture.

Wonderful job by the writer director cast and crew.
A wonderful tribute and legacy to the amazing and talented Andrea Levy, who died just Feb 2019.

Rating? - Ten out of ten - go see it if you can

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