Presented by Curious Monkey in Association with Northern Stage

Written by Paddy Campbell // Directed by Amy Golding // Designed by Katherina Radeva // Composition // Sound Design by Roma Yagnik 

Leaving home for the first time…

Is a step into the dark.

A whole new life.

If you’re leaving the care system, the reality hits even harder.

Leaving toured March – April 2018.

Leaving is the new play by Paddy Campbell (Wet House, Live Theatre / Soho – Guardian Top Ten plays 2013) Using the young people’s own words, an ensemble cast and an award winning creative team test the boundaries of verbatim theatre to bring these real voices to the stage. Leaving gives a voice to those working within the system from staff in children’s homes to MPs and policy makers. The production will create an immediate, immersive experience that will change the way you think about young people in care.

Leaving is a Curious Monkey production, in association with Northern Stage and directed by Curious Monkey’s Artistic Director Amy Golding (preggers, Beats North, Mamela).

About the production

Paddy Campbell’s play is formed from interviews with looked after young people and care leavers, staff from local authorities, children’s homes, social workers, MPs and Ofsted, in order to shine a light onto the lives of the young people and the issues they face. Paddy was inspired to write the play based on his experiences as a key worker at a North East children’s home. The development of Leaving involved care leavers and looked after young people shadowing Curious Monkey’s professional artists and learning new skills throughout the development, rehearsal and production process. We are collaborating with Northern Stage who have supported the development of both this piece and of Curious Monkey as a leading voice in independent theatre making.

Leaving is a slice of real life. It contains all the heartache and humour you would expect from genuine experiences, told by those who experience them. It reaches out to those affected by the issues in the play – from looked after young people to those working in social care, in local and national politics. It will appeal to anyone with an interest in social justice, in the role of the family and the real, raw voices of young people. Curious Monkey productions attract a high level of non-theatre going / non-arts audiences – our work has a freshness and directness that is rooted in the real experiences from which we draw our material. We believe we make theatre about the things that really matter to people. Looked after young people are rarely depicted on stage – Leaving aims to depict lives that many will recognise.

★★★★ “Warmly performed, effective and compassionate piece of verbatim theatre” The Stage

“Leaving is a clever political and human piece of theatre with a real potential to make a significant difference.” Narc Magazine

“A unique, insider view that values stories above statistics” The Guardian

“One of the great joys of being a reviewer is those times when you are proved wrong, when your preconceptions are shown to be little more than prejudices. Thanks for that, Curious Monkey!” British Theatre Guide 

Read all of the reviews here

On 27th February 2017, we ran a symposium at Northern Stage where those working in the care system, young people and members of the public had the opportunity to discuss the issues raised in the play.

CLICK HERE for more details 

Leaving is funded by Arts Council England, Newcastle Culture Fund, The Tyne and Wear Community Foundation, the Pat Newman Memorial Trust