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There or Here - Park Theatre

There or Here

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

THE UK premiere of There or Here, from the producers of the 2013 hit Yellow Face (Park Theatre/National Theatre transfer), will open the PARK90 2018 season, running from January 23 to February 17.

Jennifer Maisel’s dramatic comedy follows the journey of an inter-racial American couple who return to the country of his roots to outsource their pregnancy.

It’s 2006. When illness prevents Robyn and Ajay from having a child of their own, they return to India – the country of Ajay’s birth – to outsource their pregnancy to a local woman. As they come together to face this next step in their lives, they are unable to be the comfort the other needs.

Through sharp writing and witty observation, There or Here explores what happens when couples forego face-to-face communication in favour of the virtual. Solace is found through strangers on phone sex lines, in IT call centres and at drive-thrus. Age and location no longer matter as the world moves online, and life becomes outsourced.

The cast includes Rakhee Thakrar (as Neera), Chris Nayak (Ajay), Ursula Mohan (Ellen/Dr. Vittal), Manish Gandhi (Rajit/Raj) and Lucy Fenton (Robyn).

Rakhee Thakrar is best known for playing Shabnam Masood in EastEnders. She also plays the Eighth Doctor’s companion, Bliss, in Big Finish’s Doctor Who: The Time War audio dramas. She was nominated for Best Serial Drama performance at the 2016 National Television Awards.

Her theatre credits include Astronauts Of Hartlepool (Vaults Festival), Lalita’s Big Fat Asian Wedding (Curve Leicester), Pyaar Hai (Rich Mix), Free Booze (Edinburgh Fringe), Retaliation (Peepul Centre), Cervical Monologues (various), Chale Ga Chale Ga (UK tour), Precious Bazaar (UK tour) and Somewhere Over The Rainbow (Phoenix Theatre).

Ursula Mohan’s theatre credits include You Forgot the Mince (Edinburgh Fringe/UK Tour), King Lear (Tristan Bates Theatre/Union Theatre), Hecuba (Scoop Theatre), Horniman’s Choice (Finborough Theatre), The Veil (National Theatre), The Drowsy Chaperone (Gatehouse Theatre), Tango and US (RSC), The Good Woman of Setzuan (Hampstead Theatre), Revenge (Royal Court), Othello (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre) and Scapino (Young Vic).

Chris Nayak’s theatre credits include King Lear (Shakespeare’s Globe), Much Ado About Nothing, Love’s Labour’s Lost (RSC/Theatre Royal Haymarket), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Much Ado About Nothing, The Christmas Truce, Love’s Labour’s Lost (RSC), Macbeth (Little Angel Theatre), She Stoops to Conquer, The League of Youth (Nottingham Playhouse), A Passage to India (Shared Experience), Indian Ink (Salisbury Playhouse), The Marriage of Figaro (Tara Arts) and Mother Goose and the Wolf (Greenwich Theatre).

Manish Gandhi’s theatre credits include Now We Are Here (Young Vic Theatre), Brown Shakespeare (Efua Theodora Sutherland Drama Studio, Legon-Accra), Rizwan (FTII Pune), Limbo (Prithvi Theatre Mumbai) and Cock (Prithvi Theatre, National Centre of Performing Arts, Mumbai).

Lucy Fenton’s theatre credits include Right of Way (Lost Theatre), Kiss (The White Bear), Tess of the d’Urbervilles and Crime and Punishment (Baron’s Court Theatre), A Man for All Seasons and Racing Demon (Empty Space Theatre) and The Death of Cuchulain (Edinburgh Fringe).

Directed by Vik Sivalingam, There or Here is designed by Vicky Sweatman, with lighting design by Robbie Butler and sound design by Nicola Chang.

There or Here is suitable for ages 12+.

Tickets: Previews £14.50, Standard £18, Concessions £16.50, Child (Under 16) £13. To book, call the box office on 020 7870 6876 or visit www.parktheatre.co.uk/.

Times: Tuesday to Saturday evenings at 7.45pm, Thursday and Saturday matinees at 3.15pm.

Read more about Park Theatre’s new season.