Image: BeFrank Theatre Company (c)
‘The Point of No Return’: a Maidan-themed theatre production shown in London
5 June 2015
‘The Point of No Return’, a Maidan-themed theatre production by the BeFrank Theatre Company, was shown for four weeks at the New Diorama Theatre in London.
Opened on 28 April, the show recreated scenes from 18-21 February 2014 – the last four days of Euromaidan. ‘The Point of No Return’ is based on extensive research and personal accounts recorded during two research trips to Ukraine in July and November 2014 by the BeFrank Theatre Company, along with artistic collaborations with three partner theatre companies in Ukraine.
The British Ukrainian Society acted as a media partner and financially supported the production’s outreach programme which included talks, panel discussions and workshops with Kharkiv’s ‘Theatre na Zhukah’, all relating to the story and the themes behind it.
Post-show discussion topics included the impact of Maidan on Ukrainians, its effect globally, freedom of speech and censorship, Ukraine in the EU and the legacy of Maidan. Over the course of four weeks, the performance was seen live by 650 people.
The London-based theatre company produces thought-provoking dramas about social and political events, including the Maidan. ‘BeFrank’s ethos is not just to develop relevant, politically engaged and socially aware theatre, but also to engage with communities typically underserved by arts in the UK. By using our partnership with local Ukrainian community, we were able to engage audiences of Ukrainian heritage’, explained Philippa Kane, Producer of the BeFrank Theatre Company.
‘The Point of No Return’ is the third play we have created using BeFrank’s methodology, which begins with extensive research and collection of authentic testimonies from those with direct experience of the subject matter, weaving these into a working script which is then further developed by an ensemble into a theatrical language’, said Ms Kane.