Skip to main content

Headlong, Barbican and Theatre Royal Plymouth

A Play for the Living in a Time of Extinction

Headlong, Barbican and Theatre Royal Plymouth

A Play for the Living in a Time of Extinction

This event has passed.
My project-1 (54)

Miranda Rose Hall’s darkly funny, life-affirming show directed by Katie Mitchell is a bold experiment in eco theatre-making. Co-produced by the Barbican and Headlong.

“The difference between death and extinction is this: death is to cease to exist. Extinction is to extinguish. I think of death as individual. Extinction is collective.” Naomi is part of a theatre company who have made a play especially for you, those living through extinction, but the actors haven’t shown up yet. In the meantime, Naomi has a plan. This innovative one woman show takes us on a life-changing journey to confront the urgent ecological disaster that is unfolding around us. Part ritual, part battle cry, and powered by bicycles, this fiercely feminist off-grid production is a moving exploration of what it means to be human in an era of man-made extinction.

Sharing learning from Europe and Katie Mitchell, Headlong present an innovative touring model, the first of its kind in the UK, which sees a play tour, while the people do not. The Barbican hosts the beginning of this journey wherein each city a blueprint of the show will be uniquely brought to life by a different team of theatre makers in each venue. It forms part of a ground-breaking international experiment in reimagining theatre in a climate crisis.

Headlong will partner with and stage the play at Belgrade Theatre Coventry, New Vic Newcastle-Under-Lyme, Theatre Royal Plymouth, York Theatre Royal, and Shakespeare North. Further venues, casting and creative teams to be announced shortly.

Important information

Running time:
1hr 20 mins

Age guideline:

Post show talk – Thu 29 Jun with Jon Nash.

BSL interpreted show – Thu 29 Jun with Nikki Harris

View our digital programme!

The show contains themes of a seriously ill parent, discussions of mass extinction and sudden darkness.

Please note – most of our productions feature flashing lights and loud sounds.  

Did you know our Friend Members can get £12 Band A tickets for all performances for A Play For The Living. Add a Friend Membership to your basket and claim this offer now or check out our other Membership options!

Meet our cast and creatives!

Read more
My project-1 (59)
Shaday Barrowes-Bayewunmi as Naomi

Shaday is a Plymouth-based Performance Artist and Poet. An Activist with a Twist, her work explores themes such as Identity, Vulnerability, Race, Mental health, Nureo-diversity and Climate justice. Performer in Beyond Faces, ‘Roots in Nature’ as part of their collaboration with Greenminds and Most recently a Boat Poet, exploring Biodiversity in collaboration with Greenminds. In recent years She has focused on drawing from her experiences of having Alopecia Universalis, using it as inspiration to create daring, political work that spreads awareness for the community. Shaday performed a segment of her One woman show  ‘UNIVERSALIS’ Supported by Beyond Face CIC, in September 2022 at Devon with Love Festival. Later she received funding from Alopecia UK to continue working on the piece to increase visibility for bald black women in creative spaces and on Stage. Shaday has performed on a range of different projects with organizations across the UK, including Beyond Face, The Barbican Theatre Plymouth, The BBC, Spork! Green Minds, Spork!, Poet in the City, Alopecia UK and Strike a light

Read more
My project-1 (60)
Our director Kay Michael

Kay is a theatre-maker, facilitator and activist committed to personal and collective transformation. As a director she has developed and staged new plays at theatres including Arcola, Paines Plough and Theatre Royal Plymouth, where she was Resident Assistant Director in 2017. With her company Empty Deck she directed new European writing including the UK premiere of Cosmic Fear or The Day Brad Pitt Got Paranoia by Christian Lollike (New Diorama; Bedlam Theatre), which was shortlisted for the Sustainable Fringe Award, and she wrote and performed Sequel, a one-women show in response to ecological collapse thanks to the MGC Futures Bursary (TRP Lab; Bristol Old Vic Ferment). As a co-founder of Culture Declares Emergency Kay facilitates workshops and Cultural Assemblies for artists, cultural organisations and audiences to come together and respond to the planetary crisis, such as at the Roundhouse, Central St Martins UAL and Southbank Centre, and she has curated rallys and events such as Extinction Underground at VAULTS Festival. Kay is a co-founder and director of the award-winning global participatory campaign Letters to the Earth, for which she co-edited the book Letters to the Earth, Writing to a Planet in Crisis, introduced by Emma Thompson, and which she is now developing for the stage.

Kay is excited to be working with Katie Mitchell once again, having assisted Katie on 2071 at the Royal Court in 2014 in collaboration with climate scientist Dr Chris Rapley – which initiated Kay’s ongoing creative response to the climate and ecological emergency.

Read more
Untitled (12)
Bee Jarvis

Bee Jarvis is a Queer, Autistic; Musician, Writer, Theatre Maker, and Disability Advocate based in Plymouth. From learning the piano as a young child, she has embraced music throughout her life. After initially studying Geography and Ocean Science at The University of Plymouth, she now works completely in the arts. She has most recently featured as Musical Director and Composer in The Choir Musical, and Composer/Co-Lead in With Flying Colours Co-Pilots. Additionally, she is deeply engaged in community outreach in facilitating workshops with Far Flung Dance Theatre, and Theatre Royal Plymouth. She is so excited to start on this new chapter as The Artist For Change; Diversity and Inclusion, as an intersectional interracial autistic artist, she can’t wait to bring her lens of life experience into her professional work. Her current projects aim to encapsulate accessible theatre experiences and intertwine this with light, movement, and music. With her unwavering commitment to empowering voices and championing diversity, Bee is dedicated to creating a more inclusive and vibrant arts community.

“truly practising what theatre often preaches”

The Stage


The Daily Telegraph

“innovative, pedal-powered production”

The Guardian