Arts London Preview Theatre

Arts of the UK 2021: Kelly Gough to star in Bush Theatre’s ‘Harm’

Screenshot 2021-04-24 at 2.54.03 PM

LONDON – The Bush Theatre has announced Kelly Gough will take the role of Alice in Harm, a new monologue by Bruntwood Prize award-winning playwright Phoebe Eclair-Powell opening on 17 May (press night 21 May).   Harm, a thrilling and twisted new comedy on the corrosive effect of social media and isolation will be directed by Atri Banerjee.

When an unhappy estate agent sells a house to Alice, a charismatic social media influencer, the two strike up an unlikely friendship. But as her obsession with Alice’s perfect world intensifies, the lines between online and reality become dangerously blurred. 

A filmed version of Harm was broadcast on BBC Four on 13 April and is currently available on iPlayer. This first for the Bush Theatre is part of BBC Arts Lights Up season, which partners with theatres across the country to produce plays for audiences at home as part of the BBC Arts Culture in Quarantine initiative. The role of Alice was played by Leanne Best in the BBC version.

Kelly Gough’s theatre credits include A Streetcar Named Desire (English Touring Theatre), Don Carlos (ARA), Macbeth (Second Age), All In The Timing (Iris Theatre), Big Love (Abbey Theatre), Falling Out of Love (Yew Tree Theatre), Macbecks (Long Road Productions), Pilgrims of the Night (Rough Magic), Playboy of the Western World (Druid Theatre), Phaedra, Vinegar Tom, Terrorism, Three Sisters, Twelfth Night and Yeats Trilogy (Samuel Beckett Theatre).

On film she has appeared in the shorts In PurSUEt, Taking Stock and Cry Rosa, plus Out of Innocence, Kill Comman, Jump and Belonging to Laura.  Her television credits include Marcella, Call the Midwife, Strike Back, Broadchurch (series 3), Class, The Fall (Series 2 & 3), Country Woman, Vera, Casualty, Law & Order, Raw (series 2, 3 4 & 5), Scup, This Is Night Live, An Crisis, and The Clinic.

Phoebe Eclair-Powell is a writer from South East London. Her recent play SHED: EXPLODED VIEW won the prestigious Bruntwood Award for 2019. Previous plays include WINK (four Off West End Nominations including ‘Most Promising New Playwright’), Fury (runner up for the Verity Bargate Award 2015, winner of the Soho Young Writers Award, Offie nomination for ‘Best New Play’), TORCH with Jess Edwards (Underbelly, New Diorama), Epic Love and Pop Songs (Pleasance Theatre), The Picture of Dorian Gray  (Watermill Theatre) and These Bridges (National Theatre Connections Festival).

Phoebe has written for award-winning Channel 4 Continuing Drama Hollyoaks and an episode of Sky and HBO Max Comedy Two Weeks To Live with Maisie Williams. Phoebe is currently working with Paines Plough and Reading Rep theatre and writing her first feature film with Film Cymru Wales.

Phoebe is an alumnus of the Channel 4 screenwriting course, BBC Drama writers group, and Stolen Pictures YA incubator with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. 

Director Atri Banerjee won The Stage Debut Award for Best Director in 2019 for his production of Hobson’s Choice at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester. 

Other directing credits include Europe at LAMDA and Utopia at the Royal Exchange. 

He was previously Trainee Director at the Royal Exchange, where he was Assistant/Associate Director on productions including West Side Story, The Mysteries (also tour), Happy Days, The Almighty Sometimes, Jubilee (also Lyric Hammersmith), and Our Town. Other Assistant/Associate Director credits include The Nico Project at Manchester International Festival and Melbourne International Arts Festival and The Son at Kiln Theatre. He trained at Birkbeck and is currently a Resident Director at the Almeida Theatre.

Harm plays from 17th May to 26th June 2021 at the Bush Theatre. Tickets available from their website here

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