Back to childhood...

Identity Theatre in association with the Brighton Open Air Theatre invite you to Dennis Potter's telling of lost childhood innocence, set in the Forest of Dean during World War Two.

Kate Stoner, Andrew Wesby and David Balfe, photo by Miles Davies
Kate Stoner, Andrew Wesby and David Balfe, photo by Miles Davies

Blue Remembered Hills runs from July 19-22. Brighton Open Air Theatre (BOAT) located in Dyke Road Park on Dyke Road, Brighton & Hove. 6.30 for 7.30pm; bring a picnic.

Spokesman Gary Cook said: "Children play on an endless summer afternoon in the Forest of Dean. It is 1943. Their fathers are fighting overseas, their mothers are doing their best…

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"They free-fall through their day, their wild and unrestrained relationships both mimicking the adult world and highlighting the casual cruelty of children. At times hilarious, at times chilling, Potter’s play has become a classic.

"Dennis Potter’s affectionate study captures all the joy, horror, anxiety and delight of children at play. It holds a mirror up to our own childhood memories of carefree fun, and shows how the repercussions of action without thought can result in tragedy...

"Semi-autobiographical in nature, Blue Remembered Hills is set in a landscape similar to the one in which Potter himself grew up. It is probably Potter’s most accessible play, which is not to say it is simplistic. It remains a multi-layered and nuanced piece. Potter did insist on one thing – that all the parts be played by adults.

"The themes are timeless and universal. Potter demonstrates that human behaviour is the same no matter what age the participants are. The bullying, taking sides, picking on outsiders and make-believe of childhood games are merely played out on a bigger scale.

"The genius of the script is that they soon make you forget they’re adults and draw us into their childhood of war games, squirrel-hunting and nose-picking. The challenge for actors and directors alike is to remember the apparently-trivial details of growing up which at the time seemed so important – the shame of coming to school with a new haircut or the joy of capturing a tadpole in a jar – and transferring those emotions onto stage."

Gary added: "This production was first produced by the Southwick Players in 2016, where it was entered for the Brighton & Hove Arts Council Theatre Awards, winning the Arthur Churchill Award for Excellence, best actor for Tobias Clay, best technical achievement and best set."

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