A lot has been done to destigmatise mental health issues over the last few years: but with inevitable funding cuts ahead, a lot more still needs to be done in a greatly misunderstood area. This latest Northern Stage production, Butterfly, aims to do just that – and what’s more, it’s written by a local disabled playwright (Who else better to give a voice to than someone who is well aware of the issues at hand?).
Telling the story of Beatrice, Butterfly takes the character and the audience on a journey through time to key moments in the history of mental health perceptions and Beatrice’s own life. Without spoiling it, you can expect some Bowie! Playwright Vici Wreford Sinnott is a disability rights campaigner and artistic director of disabled-led theatre company Little Cog based in Saltburn, so had plenty of experience to draw from in composing the piece.
“Butterfly is not about suffering from, or surviving, a condition,” Vici points out. “It is about history, stigma, about misunderstandings and misrepresentations. It is about setting the record straight.” The show opened with a pay-what-you-like show at ARC Stockton on 26th January but fear not, after a nationwide tour, North East theatre fans will still be able to experience what is sure to be a compelling and thought-provoking show at Northern Stage on Tuesday 21st March.