Exciting news, tiger lovers. is heading out on an Arts Council-funded tour this Spring/Summer! We open on the 28th April at York Theatre Royal, and will be visiting venues around England, including two venues in London: Greenwich Theatre (who are co-producing the tour with us) and Tara Arts.
With the recent election of Donald Trump and reports of EU citizens getting tied into bureaucratic knots trying to formalize their right to be here, this satire about who gets to be 'one of us' feels more relevant than ever. Things that would have been unthinkable a few years ago - banning all Muslims from entering the US, threatening the rights of EU citizens to stay in Britain - are now part of common public discourse. While a global elite still move freely around the world, protected by private jets and first class treatment, those with less privilege are increasingly feeling threatened. Some people are feeling protective about the rapidly decreasing resources available to them, resources they feel are 'theirs'; some people never had or have lost what should have been 'theirs' a while ago and are just looking to find a comfortable corner in the world. Either way, there’s a climate of fear, of retrenchment. Women and people of colour would be particularly justified in feeling attacked.
Octopus was conceived and written in happier times, although the signs were there. But the anarchic fun that it has with these issues feels pretty welcome right now. Resistance, it suggests, doesn’t have to be gloomy or po-faced or overtly masculine (although it’s fine if it is). In Octopus-land, resistance can be taking each other’s hands and singing a song. We're excited to take our alterative national anthem out on the road, and keep the conversation going about what it means to be British.