Impact of alcohol tackled on stage in Thame in play commissioned by NHS

Amy Enticknap and Gaye Poole, founders of Human Theatre Company.
Amy Enticknap and Gaye Poole, founders of Human Theatre Company.

The impact of alcohol on family life will be tackled on the stage in Thame, in a production commissioned by the NHS.

The work is produced by the Human Story Theatre, which has recently gained charitable status, with Amy Enticknap from Thame as one of its founders.

Paul Ansdell

Paul Ansdell

DRY is a one-hour play with music about parenting, disappointment and middle-age drinking.

Written by Human Story Theatre’s fellow founder Gaye Poole, it has music composed by Arne Richards and is directed by Anna Tolputt. The cast features actors Bryonie Pritchard from High Wycombe and Paul Ansdell from Oxford, with cellist Rachel Watson.

It will be touring in the new year and can be seen at Thame Library on Tuesday, January 23 at 7.30pm.

This is the third play to be launched within a year for the Human Story Theatre and tickets at non-theatre spaces are ‘pay what you can’.

Bryonie Pritchard

Bryonie Pritchard

Amy said: “The drama features the Wilsons, who may be middle class and middle aged but there is nothing middling about their alcohol intake. Can they keep the ‘toxic’ out of ‘intoxicated’ and keep the family together, or is it a case of sorrows drowned?”

DRY is supported by Turning Point who deliver the Oxfordshire Road to Recovery service for people who want to make positive change in their lives, and other local counselling services.

Amy added: “As with all Human Story Theatre productions, there will be a Q&A after each show with guest professionals from Turning Point and other organisations to discuss the issues of the play and the impact of alcohol on our communities as well as to signpost people to services.”

The production will be opened on January 11-13, at Arts at the Old Fire Station, Oxford, at 7.30pm and then goes on tour. Venues include village halls, community centres, village pavilions and libraries as well as theatres. It will end its run on Friday, January 26 at the Neighbours’ Hall, Great Milton, at 7.30pm.

Oliver Sampson, recovery worker at Oxford Hub, said: “We are inspired by possibility and believe that every person has the ability to change. Turning Point support DRY as it helps bring awareness around the harm alcohol costs in our society.”

Human Story Theatre’s productions earlier this included Flat 73, supported by the Samaritans, and The Fourth Dog, supported by Against Breast Cancer and Maggie’s.