This Christmas an estimated 120,000 children will be homeless, marking an eight-year high. Many of them will be living in temporary accommodation until something more permanent can be found. Now, a new play at Birmingham Repertory Theatre gives a timely reflection on this hidden crisis. LOVE by Alexander Zeldin opens at Birmingham Repertory Theatre from Thursday 26 January until Saturday 11 February following a critically-acclaimed run at the National Theatre.
In the run up to Christmas, in a city where over 50,000 households are living in temporary accommodation, three families find themselves without a home. A middle-aged man and his elderly mum, a young family with a baby on the way, a woman who’s newly arrived from Sudan. Strangers, they have been forced together; no space is personal.
This new play by Alexander Zeldin, written through a devising process, is an intimate story of family love for our times. Zeldin was inspired to make the show after a friend at the housing and homelessness charity Shelter sent him their annual report on families spending Christmas in B&Bs.
While researching the play, the writer stayed in hostels himself and met many families in temporary accommodation. He said: “For me, the starting point is never a political idea. It’s always a human moment or encounter. What’s astonished me has been the people we’ve met and how they’ve resisted dehumanising situations in a way that is actually quite extraordinary.”
Alexander Zeldin is an Associate Director at Birmingham Repertory Theatre and his previous work includes the critically-acclaimed Beyond Caring, a play about zero hours contracts which ran at The REP in June 2016. LOVE continues his unique approach to theatre.
During the run of LOVE at Birmingham Repertory Theatre, 50p from each ticket sold will go towards The REP’s ongoing work with people at risk of homelessness.