War centenary performance and writing workshop at Lightwoods

A play, writing workshop and exhibition are being held at Lightwoods House on Wednesday 7th November as part of Sandwell’s 100th anniversary commemorations of the end of the First World War.

Worrapalava Arts will present Two Mothers of Distant Sons: Words from the Great War, a radio-style play written by Wednesbury poet laureate Brendan Hawthorne and performed by The Belmont Rep. The show starts at 7pm (doors open at 6.30pm) at Lightwoods House, Bearwood.

Tickets are free but limited so booking is essential. Please call 0121 569 4740 or email lightwoods_house@sandwell.gov.uk to reserve your place in advance.

Earlier in the day, there will be a free writing workshop, War in Words, on a drop-in basis from 10.30am to 3.30pm (lunch break 12noon-1pm). If you wish, you can register your interest when you book for the play. Completed work will be displayed during the evening event as well as First World War artefacts.

The play is a semi-biographical radio-style play based on the life of Corporal Billy Bolt, Brendan’s great uncle. The play is written in poetic form and contains original songs throughout the performance. The cast gives voice to Billy and Tommy, two young signalmen from the South Staffs Regiment, setting off for Ypres, leaving their mothers, fathers and loved ones behind to air their feelings and tell the stories of their boys through letters and telegrams.

A question and answer session follows the performance where the actors and their characters can be interviewed by members of the audience relating to the play content, its concept and realisation. Sandwell Council is supporting the project through a £850 town grant. Council leader Councillor Steve Eling said:

“This is one of the many ways Sandwell is commemorating the centenary of the end of the war and remembering the sacrifices made by people from the Sandwell area and all over the world.”

The play is primarily aimed at adults though younger audiences over 14 years of age would be welcome if accompanied by parents or guardians. Lightwoods House is fully accessible by wheelchair and interval refreshments will be available to buy.


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