My World Has Exploded A Little Bit is an acclaimed new play telling a deeply personal story of love and loss by Ovalhouse’s Associate Artist Bella Heesom and Olivier Award-winning director Donnacadh O’Briain. Following a critically acclaimed run at the 2016 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and a transfer to VAULT Festival 2017 that was Highly Commended by the Awards Committee, My World Has Exploded A Little Bit will run at London’s Ovalhouse as part of a national tour.

Bella Heesom’s bold writing debut explores the beauty and agony of confronting grief in an increasingly secular society in this darkly comic and unflinchingly honest play about how she dealt with the deaths of her parents. Part true story, part farcical performance lecture, this bittersweet show is a refreshing mix of tender intimacy, live music, hard-hitting philosophy and clownish silliness.

Heesom bravely lays herself bare while presenting an increasingly absurd ‘Logical, Philosophical Guide to Managing Mortality’. She is joined onstage by Eva Alexander, who plays her hapless assistant; a mischievous, clown-like character who ineptly demonstrates the awkward, sometimes comical realities of patient care, and sings inappropriate songs about brain tumours. The show has a multimedia design by Elizabeth Harper, featuring projected text and dreamlike sketches, and is supported by an enchanting live piano score composed by Anna O’Grady.

My World Has Exploded A Little Bit is the first in a series of plays to be made by ALL ABOUT YOU; the creative collaboration between writer/performer Bella Heesom and Olivier award-winning director/dramaturg Donnacadh O’Briain (Rotterdam by Jon Brittain at Trafalgar Studios; Always Orange by Fraser Grace at the RSC). The pair are Associate Artists at Ovalhouse, where they are also currently developing their next show; a celebration of female sexuality, titled: Rejoicing At Her Wondrous Vulva The Young Woman Applauded Herself.

Owen Calvert-Lyons, Ovalhouse’s Head of Theatre & Artist Development, comments, I am very proud to be presenting the work of three of our Associate Artists, Bella Heesom, Donnacadh O’Briain and Koko Brown, this season. We are supporting, developing and nurturing some of the most exciting artists in London and these are the first plays to come out of this programme. Across the season our artists present you with challenging visions of our present as well as hopeful visions of our future and invite us to reflect on where our own journey will lead us.

The fantastic Summer Season 2017 is as follows:

My World Has Exploded a Little Bit
(23rd – 27th May, 7.30pm)
Bella Heesom’s debut play, directed by Donnacadh O’Briain, is part true story, part farcical performance lecture. It tells a deeply personal story of loss and love, through a darkly comic step-by-step guide to bereavement. Mixing tender intimacy and unflinching honesty with hard-hitting philosophy, clownish silliness and an enchanting live piano score, it
takes the audience on a powerful emotional journey, shot through with jet black comedy.

The Forever Machine
(30th May – 3rd June, 2pm)
After the success of Eloise and the Curse of the Golden Whisk, award- winning company The Wardrobe Ensemble return to delight families at Ovalhouse during half-term, using bold stagecraft and out of this world soundscapes to bring this curious tale to life. Get carried away on this wild sci-fi adventure.
Leap through vortexes in time and space! Fight demons in the past! Dance disco in the future!

One Item Only
(1st – 3rd June, 11.30am and 2.30pm)

If you had to take a long journey and could only take one item with you – what would it be? Follow one boy’s journey across continents in search of refuge from his troubled homeland, in this eventful and uplifting story of hope and resilience where the human spirit triumphs. Inspired by recent events, and created by Bristol-based Greek artist, Margarita Sidirokastriti, family audiences will share the challenges of his adventurous journey towards an uncertain but ultimately optimistic future.

Trinity by Brave New Worlds
(19th – 22nd, 26th and 27th June, 7.30pm)
Trinity is a visually stunning, design-led performance staged in a beautiful derelict gothic chapel that transports audiences to other worlds. A collaboration with acclaimed international artists, the show explores the aesthetics of gender and female iconography in our society’s visual culture, from pagan and religious artefacts to bedroom selfies, to create a highly visceral visual landscape with an immersive sound experience. This is an offsite event taking place at The Asylum, a ten minute walk from Queens Road Peckham station.

The Believers are But Brothers – Edinburgh preview
(12th – 15th July, 7.30pm)
We live in a time where old orders are collapsing and tech savvy and extremist groups rip through twentieth century political certainties. Amidst this, a generation of young men find themselves burning with resentment. This crisis of masculinity leads them into an online world of fantasy, violence and reality. Writer and theatre maker Javaad Alipoor spent time in this digital realm, exploring the blurry and complex world of extremists, spies, journalists and fantasists. This bold one-man show weaves together their stories.

An Injury
(18th – 22nd July, 7.30pm)
After their award-winning collaboration on Heads Up, writer Kieran Hurley (Beats, Hitch) and director Alex Swift (How to Win Against History, Mess) team up once again to create a thrilling new play about violence, love, the distance between us, and the harm we do to each other. Morvern wants to get up and walk away from this desk. Danny wants to write something revolutionary. Joe wants to protect what good we still have left. And then there’s Isma. We don’t know much about Isma. We know she’s twelve. We know she speaks only Arabic. We know she’s here. And we know she’s watching. Here, in this room, four speakers pick through the fragments of four shattered lives.

I am a Tree – Edinburgh preview
(27th – 29th July, 7.30pm)
Writer Jamie Wood presents a show like no other. A show that is something else entirely. A dance party with ghosts, in a forest, in a theatre. A hopping ritual. An invitation to drink deep: to face the shadows that growl on your insides and laugh big. Hold on tight!

As with every Ovalhouse season, the Summer programme also include two exciting new works-in-development, a chance to see raw new ideas that might develop into a bigger piece, or might be a way to explore an idea. The new FiRST BiTES are:

(20th – 22nd July, 7.45pm)
Koko Brown considers the concept of mixed-race privilege as she tries to connect clashing cultures and explore what it means to be mixed in contemporary Britain. A show about identity which blends spoken-word with live vocal looping and asks ‘What are you when you are always the other?’

Juliet and Romeo’s work in progress
(25th – 26th July, 7.30pm)
Ben Duke’s Lost Dog will be sharing something of their as yet unstarted and definitely still unfinished version of Shakespeare’s deeply pessimistic teenage love story. A humorous and heartfelt investigation into love, loss and longevity.

Location Ovalhouse, 52-54 Kennington Oval, London SE11 5SW

How to get there Ovalhouse is located directly opposite the Oval cricket ground. The nearest underground stations are Oval (on Northern line) and Vauxhall (on the Northern and Victoria lines). The nearest rail station is Vauxhall.

Box Office Tickets are available priced £14 | £9 concessions (Main
house shows)
Preview tickets are £9
FiRST BiTES tickets are £5 in advance (£8 on the door)
Half term family tickets are £28 (2 adults, 2 children)
Available from Ovalhouse Box Office and, 020 7582 7680.
Get 25% off tickets when you book for 2 or more shows!

Twitter @bellaheesom, @Ovalhouse


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