Graeae 40th anniversary production


Maya Coates and Jack Hunter in Graeae's 40th anniversary show, Kerbs. Pic: Joe Bailey
Maya Coates and Jack Hunter in Graeae's 40th anniversary show, Kerbs. Pic: Joe Bailey

Marking its 40th anniversary year, Graeae, the UK’s leading disabled-led theatre company, is at Scarborough’s Stephen Joseph Theatre (March 23-26) with Kerbs, the debut play by Wolverhampton-based playwright and poet Michael Southan.

Kerbs deals with otherwise unspoken issues about sex and romance among disabled people. Lucy and David are dating – or at least, they’re trying to. Faced with first date disasters, a few crossed wires and Lucy’s mum, what they really need is some space, a bit of fun – and some independence.

Kerbs is a co-production between Graeae and Belgrade Theatre, Coventry for Coventry UK City of Culture 2021 and will feature Graeae’s familiar integrated creative captioning and audio description at every show. A digital version will be available for home-viewing at the end of the live run.

Nabil Shaban and Richard Tomlinson founded Graeae in 1980. They had met at college in Coventry and had created theatre productions involving disabled people, and shared a vision to remove some of the myths about disabled actors and what they are able to achieve as performers.

By May 1980, they had assembled a company of disabled performers to perform the first Graeae play, Sideshow, and the rest is theatre history...