E15 (4 stars)

This article is from 2015


Old School Agit-prop outrage

In 2013, 29 single mothers faced eviction from their social accommodation. Banding together to fight back, they challenged their local council not only to protect them but to consider the political imperatives that are causing the housing crisis. FYSA bring their story to the stage, using a verbatim script and a ferocious political focus.

By linking the personal stories of the mothers and a wider examination of London's housing situation, FYSA create an old-fashioned and immediate piece of political theatre: the issues are clarified, the impact of legislation is described in personal terms and there is a clear villain (the mayor of Newham, Robin Wales). The young cast bring their dynamism and the individual stories of the mothers are told fully and directly. The political activist who joined them comes across as naïve, and some of the campaign's conduct is less than glorious, but this honesty only highlights the inequality and dishonesty that is promoted by the state's policies.

A story of internal exile – Londoners banished from their city – and the disgraceful way that the powerful treat the marginalised, E15's old-school play is sadly appropriate in an era when old-school political divisions are returning.

Gilded Balloon, until 31 Aug, 7.45pm £8--£10 (£7--£9)


  • 4 stars

Social drama based on a true story.