The Gift

Presented by Eclipse Theatre and Belgrade Theatre Coventry
by Janice Okoh | Directed by Dawn Walton

An outrageous play about imperialism, cross-racial adoption, cultural appropriation...and tea.

Brighton, 1862. A day in the life of Sarah, an African girl, adopted by Queen Victoria and raised in the Queen’s circles. Today is the eve of her having to return to Africa but will she go?  

The present. A day in the life of Sarah, a black middle-class woman staying in a Cheshire village with her husband and small child. They are paid a visit by well-meaning neighbours who have something to confess…  

The two Sarahs meet Queen Victoria for tea. This won’t be your regular tea party…

The fourth national tour born from Revolution Mix – an Eclipse movement that is spearheading the largest ever delivery of new Black British stories. The first Revolution Mix story was the sell-out production of Black Men Walking and the second, this year’s highly acclaimed Princess & The Hustler.

“Filled to the brim with great writing and good performances.”  The Guardian

"A bold exploration of black Britishness that is as agonising as it is funny.”  ★★★★ The Metro 

“A must-see piece of theatre.” ★★★★ BroadwayWorld

"Janice Okoh’s clever and hilariously funny exploration of what it means to be black in Britain offers a layered and complex perspective." ★★★★★ Afridiziak

“An uncomfortable but rewarding play of stories we can't forget.” ★★★★★ Coventry Telegraph

"The more you dig your nails into The Gift the more it reveals, and the more it hurts. Dawn Walton’s production embraces levels, layers and structures that go beyond words." Exeunt Magazine

“One of the most powerful and complex discussions of race on the current British stage...” The Theatre Times

"Could be one of the landmark plays of our time."  Leamington Courier 

“…uncomfortable, hilarious, bewildering and thought-provoking. It is clearly produced with devotion from the cast and crew, directed with passion by Dawn Walton."  ★★★★ The Upcoming

"Janice Okoh’s writing and Dawn Walton’s direction are excellent, with each line carrying weight.”  ★★★★ Brum Hour

"The Gift will make you laugh and think seriously about the many forms of racism and deserves to be widely seen.”  Curtain Up

"Lingers in the mind long afterwards." London Belongs To Me
 

Belgrade Theatre, Coventry Sat 18 - Sat 25 Jan

 

Theatre Royal Stratford East, London

Wed 29 Jan - Sat 15 Feb

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The North Wall, Oxford

Fri 21 - Sat 22 Feb

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Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds

Thur 27 - Sat 29 Feb

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NST City, Southampton

Tues 3 - Sat 7 Mar

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Cast:

Aggie / Sarah

Donna Berlin

Harriet Waller / Queen Victoria

Joanna Brookes

Mrs Schoen / Harriet

Rebecca Charles

James / James Davies

Dave Fishley

Sarah Bonetta Davies

Shannon Hayes

Ben / Reverend Venn  

Richard Teverson


Creative Team:

Writer

Janice Okoh 

Director

Dawn Walton

Designer

Simon Kenny

Lighting Designer

Johanna Town

Composer and Sound Designer

Adrienne Quartly

Movement Director & Associate Director  Vicki Igbokwe

Casting Director 

Briony Barnett, CDG

Dramaturg

Ola Animashawun

Voice & Dialect Coach

Hazel Holder

Etiquette Coach

Louise Kempton

Fight Director

Stephen Medlin


#TheGift 

Photo credit: Ellie Kurttz