New play brings PTSD into focus
The fear of prejudice and judgement stops many people from getting help and can destroy families and end lives.
First on stage, on Wednesday May 17, Give Me Your Love by leading theatre company Ridiculusmus, is a seriously funny play informed by medical research and real- life testimonies.
Zach has withdrawn into a cardboard box in his kitchen. His friend Leuan attempts to deliver him a capsule of MDMA ( ecstasy) as a cure for his post- traumatic stress.
What follows is a head warping exchange on patriotism, conflict and supermarket shopping that will tickle, move and appal you in equal measure.
Chosen as one of the top 10 stand- out performances to watch at The Brighton Fringe, Shell Shock: The Diary of Tommy Atkins ( Thursday June 29) is the incredible personal story of Neil Watkins, Iraq war veteran, in the form of a diary. It was adapted for stage by Tim Marriott ( fondly remembered as ‘ Gavin’ in the Brittas Emprire!).
Portraying one soldier’s moving and poignant struggle with life back on Civvy Street, it mixes emotionally charged scenes with light- hearted observations of everyday life – a dreaded trip to IKEA, a seemingly mundane post office queue, and a romantic break with his girlfriend! It’s powerful stuff – emotional, at times comic, and yet very real.
Shell Shock is proud to support the charities Time to Change and Heads Together.
The aim of Time to Change is ‘ for everyone with a mental health problem to be free of fear and to have equal opportunities in all areas of life’.
In support of Heads Together, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry are spearheading the campaign to end stigma around mental health.
Heads Together aims to change the national conversation on mental health and wellbeing, and is a partnership with inspiring charities with decades of experience in tackling stigma, raising awareness, and providing vital help for people with mental health challenges.
Barney Jeavons, director of Aldershot’s West End Centre, told us: “As part of a season to support mental health issues in and around members of the Armed Forces, following the play Scorched in April, we are delighted to welcome Give Me Your Love and Shell Shock to the West End Centre.
“I’ve been a big supporter of Ridiculusmus for many years and both plays will help to tackle the stigma surrounding mental health problems that lie at the heart of some of our greatest social challenges.”
Tickets cost just £ 12, with £ 10 concessions ( Shell Shock also has a special £ 6 concession for veterans and UK Armed Forces personnel), and can be purchased online at www. westendcentre. co. uk or via the venue’s box office by calling 01252 330040.