Q&A | Kayleigh Kavanagh | Playwright

To get you ready for our April Shorts we’ve been talking to all the writers about their plays and working as a playwright.

In Kayleigh’s play Not Forgetting Us, every day Glenda and Barbra spend in the nursing home is the same. Glenda dreams of going outside, but Barbra resists; she’s scared of something, something that could change their lives for good.

What prompted you to write Not Forgetting Us?
Initially an interest in the idea “What is reality to the individual?” As one person’s reality can be vastly different to another’s, it is difficult to say which person has the right version, and who is ‘wrong’ or slightly altered. I wanted to take this idea and play with it, eventually creating Barbra and showing the audience her reality.

What do you think the audience will like about it?
The twist at the end mostly, but I think the relationship between Glenda and Barbra is quite comical and people can relate to that friendship and bickering.

How do you hope the piece will develop through the rehearsal process and its performance in Descent?
I hope they capture the essence of Barbra and the bond between her and Glenda. It will be interesting to see how it is interpreted by other people. I’m genuinely excited to see what they produce.

How did you get into writing?
I’ve always written from being young so it was a natural option for me to pursue. I was told to do something I enjoy with my life, and I love writing, I’m grateful that others have liked it also.

Which writers inspire you?
I think every writer has something to offer the world and even if I don’t find something to my taste I still appreciate the way it has been written. I think inspiration can come in many forms and whether its poetry, song writing, plays, novels etc you can draw from any of them. I am a fan of novel writers such as Dennis Wheatley, and playwrights like Samuel Beckett. As they have a great way of captivating their audience and challenging them to think in a different way, at least for me.

What’s your favourite play and why?
Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett, because he wrote an open structure play where he broke down the conventions of theatre and still entertained people. This partly inspired me to write Not Forgetting Us as I took from his work the simplicity of a character trapped in their own world, again this idea of reality, and the innocence of Estragon and Vladimir rejecting the true reality to stay in the safety of the world they’ve created. These concepts help to construct Barbra’s reality in my play.

Not Forgetting Us will be performed as part of Descent Shorts on the 5th April at Rich Mix. More info

About Kayleigh
Kayleigh recently graduated from the University of Cumbria after studying English and Creative Writing. As a writer she experiments with various forms of writing and repeatedly creates new and engaging material. She was also an intern for a writing development agency and publishers, Commonword, and learnt extensively from this experience.  To date she has had several poems published and now through Descent, a play also. Whilst working on her long term novel she enjoys writing several other pieces in order to keep her writing interesting and progressive.


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