The Castaways

  Charlotte Wood as Sam - photo credit Paul Leslie Hutson

Charlotte Wood as Sam - photo credit Paul Leslie Hutson

In the not too distant future, flooding and coastal erosion have ravaged many parts of the UK, and scores of towns and cities have been destroyed. Despite the warning signs, the rallies and petitions, the problem has been largely ignored. Now the country is in a state of emergency.

Turning the international refugee crisis on its head, The Castaways is the story of Sam, a young mother trying to protect her family and find a new home in a country on the brink of environmental devastation. She and her young son are flooded out of their home in York, and from there they embark on a journey

that will lead them from camp to camp, forced into a reality of hunger and uncertainty. With a growing population of desperate migrants, border control is strict, but as the veneer of civilisation begins to slip, Sam is faced with the dangerous decision to flee.

Written by - Rachel Price

Directed by  - Rebecca Thomson

Performed by - Charlotte Wood

Engaging, ingenious and disturbingly topical - a sharp piece of new writing about our changing climate and an excellent performance to go with it
— Paul Burbridge - Artistic Director, Riding Lights Theatre Company

About the Production

The Castaways is a piece of theatre that was initially written and showcased as part of a Script Yorkshire new writing project in association with Wildgoose Theatre in York in autumn 2017.  It has been commissioned by Migration Matters Festival in Sheffield to be part of their June 2018 programme.

The play works to develop the audience's understanding of migration and encourage community cohesion by shedding new light on the refugee crisis. By putting a recognisable and relatable character of British descent into the shoes of a displaced migrant, the story conjures up the prospect of  'that could be me' for its audience members.

By 'bringing the crisis home' in such a way, the piece aims to challenge negative opinions held towards asylum seekers and refugees, and encourages its audience to respect and interact with others in their own modern communities.

It brought the issues into my reality
— Year 11 PSHE student after a schools' performance and workshop

Project Future

Hearing the personal stories of some of the refugees involved in Hull Help for Refugees has inspired us as a company to develop the show further. We are in the process of applying for Arts Council funding in order to write a second story, the story of a young male Syrian refugee; his demographic is the most negatively targeted group by the media, and so we aspire to tell the other side of the story. We aim to tour this to venues in Spring 2019, with the potential to preview in late 2018.

This is what it’s like. I lived in a tent just like this for six months in Calais.
— Hamoud, Hull Help For Refugees

Bringing 'The Castaways' to You

Suitable for 14+ audience, The Castaways  lasts approximately 40 minutes in its current format. Available for public performances the production is suited to an evening or weekend programming slot, as well as being suitable for school performances.

We also offer bespoke workshops to school audiences. You can find out more about our work with schools by downloading our education pack for The Castaways.

If you would like to discuss bringing the production to your area, please contact us and we will be happy to discuss this with you.

Technical specifications - The Castaways is a small-scale show that is suited to a studio space. A minimum of 3m x 3m performance space is required. We require a technician to operate the sound and very simple lighting during the show. A general wash focused onto the stage area is all that is required.