Greenwich & Docklands Festival
27 August 2021 – 7.30pm (audio-described, BSL interpreted, captioned, relaxed performance)
28 August 2021 – 2.00pm & 7.30pm
29 August 2021 – 2.00pm & 7.30pm
30 August 2021 – 2.00pm & 7.30pm
Directed by ATC’s Artistic Director Matthew Xia, this site-responsive outdoor production is designed by Sandra Falase (J’Ouvert, Sonia Friedman Prods., Romeo and Juliet – Orange Tree), with music by Fran Rivers (Evening Standard Future Theatre Fund Award winner, 2021; Othello, NYT) and movement by Vicki Igbokwe (founder and creative director of Uchenna Dance, Mass Movement Choreographer, Olympic & Paralympic Ceremonies).
Family Tree takes as its inspiration the story of Henrietta Lacks, an African American woman, whose cells were harvested and cultivated without her consent after her death from cervical cancer in the 1950s. The so-called HeLa cells have been vital to studying disease and have even contributed to the development of the COVID-19 vaccines. Using the Lacks story as a springboard, the work is a powerful exploration around the themes of ethics in healthcare, racism, the environment and a woman’s right to autonomy over her own body.
This outdoor staging of Family Tree is presented by ATC, FESTIVAL.ORG and Young Vic from the co-commission by ATC and Young Vic, for 7 performances only, as part of the development process for a full theatre run in 2022.
Actors Touring Company Artistic Director MATTHEW XIA says:
“Mojisola Adebayo has created a play which responds to the present moment whilst holding historical malpractice to account. It’s fearless, brutally honest, at turns hilarious, and ultimately transformative. This ritualistic celebration is our way of uplifting, remembering, and learning from these women who were used in the name of medical advancement.”
Recommended age guidance: 13+