Fringe show debut earns rave reviews
A play by a former pupil of the Minster School, Southwell, who was inspired by her sister’s two-year battle with anorexia nervosa, has completed a successful ten-day run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Evangeline (Evie) Osbon, of Fiskerton, wrote Think in collaboration with Maddie Coles while they were at ALRA (Academy of Live and Recorded Arts) in London.
It was inspired by Evie’s younger sister, Izzie, who was diagnosed just before her 16th birthday. She was eventually admitted to a specialist eating disorders hospital in Sheffield where she spent five months before being well enough to return home in May last year.
Izzie was discharged by the Child And Adolescent Mental Health Services team earlier this year and is now hoping to train as a psychiatric nurse.
The play, which is a story of a boy suffering anorexia and a girl battling depression, had a sell-out preview show at Theatre 503 in London.
The Edinburgh venue was at least three-quarters full each night.
“This was such a huge achievement for us considering we are a new theatre company with no current track record and tackling an issue that people tend to shy away from,” said Evie.
The play received a four-star review in Broadway Baby and three stars from a review in The Scotsman newspaper.
A not-for-profit production house — Mind Out Theatre Co — was created to put on the play.
'A wonderful and inspiring place'
Evie said she was extremely proud of what they had achieved as a company.
“I have learnt so much about the process of writing, directing and producing — roles I didn’t previously realise I might enjoy,” she said.
“Edinburgh Fringe Festival is such a wonderful and inspiring place and I cannot wait to get back there with all the things I know now.”
Evie’s family were among those to watch the show.
Her father, Mr Kevin Osbon, said it was fantastic and Izzie said they had been very accurate and honest in their representation of an inpatient unit.
The company is having a break for summer but plans to get back to rehearsals in early September for a tour supported by ALRA.
Evie hopes to attract programmers and producers who could potentially bring the show to other venues for longer runs.
She is also keen to rewrite some of the play and develop the storyline further.
“I have considered that our play could tour schools across the country and provide key insights into mental health for young people,” she said.
“Ultimately, Mind Out Theatre is open to collaborations and opportunities across the UK with the continued aim to raise awareness about mental health.”