Five different rooms, five different actors, five different experiences. This site-specific promenade performance sees you led underground, beneath Barton Arcade in the city centre, and through a maze-like set to peer into cages, cells and other means of containment. Sewn together with a story inspired by Mabel Cooper – a learning disabled resident of a long-stay hospital, who pressed the button that demolished one of the last of these controversial institutions in the UK – each thread of the piece is seen separately through the eyes of a goddess, a baby, a bird, an eater and a ghost. Award-winning theatre company Access All Areas presents a fantastical, disruptive and immersive experience exploring a history of being locked away, silenced and ignored, and what this past means to learning disabled people today. Specially commissioned for Week 53, the powerful work has been garnering praise from all corners – be sure to expect the unexpected. For more Week 53 Festival events, read our top five picks.

The 17 – Sat 26 May, Brickworks, Barton Arcade, St Ann’s Square, M3 2BH. Tel: 0843 208 6000, times vary, £10,

Thu 17 May - Wed 23 May
Sarah-Clare Conlon
Published on:
Sun 15 Apr 2018