Students Staff

18 September 2013

New play Fishskin Trousers by Essex writer named Time Out Critics’ Choice

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Fishskin Trousers by Elizabeth Kuti from the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex has been named the Time Out Critics' Choice and secured praise from national newspaper critics.

The show inspired by the legend of the ‘Wildman of Orford’ has received four-star reviews from The Guardian and Time Out plus positive comments from The Stage plus influential websites The Upcoming and Exuent during its current London run ahead of visits next month to Colchester, Brighton and finally Orford itself on Saturday 26 October.

Elizabeth said: “We are really excited about how it has been going and we’ve received great reviews. It is a new play inspired by the local legend of the Wildman of Orford which takes new angle on the story and also looks at who the Wildman might have been.

“The play weaves together with that story more contemporary stories – one about the Cold War experiments with radar on Orford Ness and another story about a young woman who is in a very difficult situation and needs to take a tough decision.

“Orford is a very beautiful, atmospheric place and the story of the Wildman became interesting to me because of its themes of how people treat those they don’t understand.”

Using just the power of words and storytelling Fishskin Trousers brings together the haunting tales of three lost people from different eras, united by the common setting of the fishing village of Orford, its castle and its mysterious island, Orford Ness.

Lyn Gardner in The Guardian said: “This is storytelling theatre at its simplest, and it's always measured, never showy...This exquisitely couched trio of monologues by Elizabeth Kuti swirl around one another, catching each other's tails like mermen frolicking in the surf.”

Natasha Tripney in The Stage said: “Kuti’s play is full of echoes, of mythic inventive, evocative and occasionally moving piece of writing.”

Patrick Marmion in Time Out said: “Kuti has a remarkable ear for detail and vivid images flicker throughout, opening vistas in her characters' accounts of mystical experiences on the Suffolk coast...Kuti brings together past and present as though they were coexistent.”

Fishskin Trousers will be at the Finborough Theatre until Saturday 28 September then drop into the Lakeside Theatre on Sunday 13 October before a run at the Emporium in Brighton from Wednesday 16 October to Saturday 19 October. Finally the play will be staged at St. Bartholomew’s Church in Orford itself on Saturday 26 October.


Finborough Theatre website

Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies

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