Terrain and Theatre503 present
Written by Maureen Lennon
Directed by Tom Bellerby
Helen is forty when she loses her husband. Becca is fifteen when her Dad dies. Then it’s just the two of them, what do they do next?
Maureen Lennon’s play, shortlisted for the Theatre503 International Playwriting Award, unfolds through snapshots of their relationship over the next forty years. Joys and traumas, laughs and arguments. Exploring the thread which binds them together and the different ways they damage and save each other. A play about love, grief, and two women up a hillside with ashes stuck to their trouser leg.
Terrain is a new company dedicated to promoting Northern artists and the stories they tell. The company looks to celebrate the contemporary narrative landscape of the region and ensure brilliant plays get in front of audiences.
This project is supported by Hull City Council, MG Futures, Sir James Reckitt Charity, City Health Care Partnership and Hull Truck Theatre.
Running time: 85 mins (no interval)
Age guidance: 14+
Content information: This show contains themes that some audience members may find distressing. If this sounds like it could apply to you, you can view content information here or the full Care Pack here.
9 May 7.30pm WRITERS NIGHT: A chance for writers to enjoy a discounted ticket and meet our literary department and the writer of the show. Attendees to Writers Night are invited to submit for our Rapid Write Response initiative. To unlock a £6 ticket, email firstname.lastname@example.org to be digitally tagged as a writer. If you have previously been tagged as a writer, your ticket will automatically adjust to £6 on the final page of booking – you do not need a Promo Code. If you are unable to attend our Writers Night, the £6 tickets will also be available up until Saturday 13th. There will also be a Zoom session with Maureen Lennon, writer of the play, followed by a drop-in on Zoom with our Literary Manager, Steve Harper starting at 7pm on Wednesday 3rd May. You can sign up for it here.
24 May 12pm PARENT & BABY: Provided as an opportunity for parents and/or guardians to enjoy a spot of theatre without the need to hire a babysitter. Please note, we do not exclude other audience members from booking to see this performance.
Maureen is a Hull based writer. She is a graduate from the English and Theatre Studies BA from The University of Bristol and the Writing for Performance and Publication MA from The University of Leeds (Distinction). She is an Associate Artist of Middle Child Theatre, a Leeds Playhouse FUSE writer 2019 and a Sphinx30 playwright. In 2020 her play Helen was shortlisted for the Theatre503 International Playwriting Award. In 2018/19 she was longlisted for the Alfred Bradley Bursary for Radio Drama. Her last play, Us Against Whatever, was produced in 2019 by Middle Child Theatre in assoc. with Hull Truck Theatre and Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse. It is published by Oberon. Her play Bare Skin On Briny Waters (co-written with Tabitha Mortiboy) was produced by Bellow Theatre and Hull UK City of Culture in the 2017 Edinburgh Takeover and received two award commendations from NSDF. She has also written work for Paines Plough, Sheffield Theatres, Pilot Theatre and Hull Truck Theatre. She is currently under commission to Silent Uproar, Hull Truck Theatre & Pilot Theatre, Middle Child Theatre, and York Theatre Royal.
INTERVIEW: Maureen Lennon: Helen - by Caro Moses for This Week Culture
Posted on 12 May 2023
As the mother of a daughter, ‘Helen’ – currently completing a run at London’s Theatre503 – caught my attention as soon as I heard about it. It’s an exploration of a mother/daughter relationship, with a specific focus on their shared grief.
The play is the work of writer Maureen Lennon and is produced by new north-based theatre company Terrain. I spoke to Maureen about the play and the creative team behind the show, as well as her career and hopes for the future.
CM: Can you start by telling us what ‘Helen’ is about? What story does the play tell?
ML: ‘Helen’ tells the story of a mother and daughter, and their evolving relationship after they lose their husband/father. Spanning forty years, the play explores the joys and traumas, laughs and arguments that shape their bond as they navigate the challenges of life in the aftermath of loss.
It asks us to re-examine our idea of grief, looking at how we carry it with us, how it changes us, but also how we change it as our lives expand and contract. I think it’s a play about love as much as loss.
Read the full article