Press Coverage

What has the press said about Don’t Wake Me: The Ballad Of Nihal Armstrong?

London Reviews May/June 2013

MICHAEL BILLINGTON – GUARDIAN 07/06/13

“Superbly performed by Jaye Griffiths and sensitively directed by Guy Slater, this is a four-star event that deserves the widest possible audience and movingly vindicates the monologue form.”

http://www.guardian.co.uk/stage/2013/jun/07/blairs-children-dont-wake-me-review

Evening Standard Review 23rd May – FOUR STARS

“Passionate and moving… with a heart breaking sense of authenticity.”

http://www.standard.co.uk/goingout/theatre/dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-chickenshed-theatre–theatre-review-8629256.html

The Public Reviews – 05/06/13 – FOUR STARS

Jaye Griffiths “is tender, angry, forlorn and wickedly funny … this is, without doubt, a piece of work that will affect every audience that sees it”

http://www.thepublicreviews.com/dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-cockpit-theatre-london/

 Everything Theatre 07/06/13 – FOUR STARS

“One thing Don’t Wake Me can’t be accused of is sentimentality … Jaye Griffiths kept the audience enthralled … she was funny, subtle, exuded joy as well as despair… A soul wrenching performance.”

http://everything-theatre.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/dont-wake-me-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong.html

One Stop Arts 07/06/2013- FIVE STARS

“You’ll struggle to find a better piece of theatre.”

http://onestoparts.com/review-dont-wake-me-cockpit-theatre

Performance Reviewed 12/06/2013

“A phenomenally powerful dramatic work… I cannot urge you to see it strongly enough…”

 

 

http://performancereviewed.com/theatre-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-at-the-cockpit-theatre/

 

Teen Theatre Reviews 11/06/2013: Storme Toolis, actress with Cerebral Palsy, says:

 

“Tough show to review – a one woman piece about a mother with a son who has cerebral palsy (I have it too) who tragically dies at the age of 15. Made even more powerful by the fact it was a true story this has to be one of the best pieces of theatre I’ve seen on disability. I went with my mum and she seemed to find it much tougher than I did, I know no different, I’ve always been the way I am and I love it.”

 

http://teentheatre.livejournal.com/

 

Little Theatre Girl 11/06/2013

 

“There were triumphs and victories that were harrowing, uplifting, mundane, extraordinary, optimistic and depressing in this tale of shape shifting dragons.”

 

http://littletheatregirl.wordpress.com/2013/06/11/dont-wake-me/

Jo Suthers- 19/6/13

“This is one of the most powerful pieces of theatre I have ever seen. This emotional roller-coaster is beautifully written in verse and yet the strength of the poetry is not diluted by the inclusion of Gupta’s factual journey, meandering through the peaks and troughs of hope and disappointment. Despite digging into the depths of her heart and sharing such a personal and heart-wrenching journey, Gupta’s skill for poetic life writing stands out as exemplary.”

http://josuthers.wordpress.com/2013/06/19/dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-at-the-cockpit-theatre/

Disability Horizons 20/06/2013

 

“I am thankful to this brave writer for opening my mind and teaching me about the deeper layers of living with disability.”


http://disabilityhorizons.com/2013/06/dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-at-the-cockpit-theatre/?utm_source=Disability+Horizons+RSS-Email&utm_campaign=99d2c6a02f-RSS_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_75cf3532a8-99d2c6a02f-303191889

Disability Arts Online 22/06/2013

“A mother took on the responsibility of writing a play about her dead son. She wrote something beautiful, true and so nearly perfect. She carried her son’s voice forward. Jaye Griffiths took the ‘bundle’ in her hands and gave an extraordinary performance. Now, for just a few lines, the responsibility is mine: It’s a wonderful piece of work, and deserves to be widely seen.”

http://www.disabilityartsonline.org.uk/dont-wake-me

Edinburgh Fringe 2013 Reviews

Indiability 30/07/2013

Jaye Griffiths plays the role of the ever-loving mother to perfection.”

http://www.indiability.org/disability-knowledge/dont-wake-me-stage-play-hits-edinburgh/

Broadway Baby – FOUR STARS

“Griffiths shifts between addressing the audience as Gupta, often with disarming directness, and inhabiting the various other figures in the story. She brings such a passionate warmth and raw commitment to the work that audiences would be forgiven for assuming she was its author.”

http://www.broadwaybaby.com/listing.php?id=20451

The Stage- MUST SEE 13/08/13

“Guided by Guy Slater’s sensitive, precise direction, Griffiths raises the intensity of an already highly charged script and tackles comedy and tragedy with equal energy and emotional depth.”

http://ed.thestage.co.uk/reviews/1737

The Scotsman- FOUR STARS 17/08/13

“What is striking about the play, though, is that while it is in part a document of the social and practical problems faced by people with disabilities and their families, it also moves along on a tide of mighty poetry, like a great love song from the mother to her beautiful and brilliant boy, whose increasingly broken body contains such a passionate and intelligent mind. Nihal is, in that sense, the love of his mother’s life; and although by the end of this heart-stopping play the boy himself has gone, the powerful intertwining of their fates continues, as she sings out her truth about what was, what might have been, and what still lives with her, in her heart.”

http://www.edinburgh-festivals.com/blog/2013/08/17/theatre-review-dont-wake-me/

threeweeks.co.uk FIVE STARS

“Words and communication are at the heart of this tale and the text does an excellent job of conveying hard-to-express feelings, with speech written as poetry.”

http://www.threeweeks.co.uk/article/ed2013-theatre-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-the-nihal-theatre-company-with-louise-chantal-festival-highlights/

Words and communication are at the heart of this tale and the text does an excellent job of conveying hard-to-express feelings, with speech written as poetry. – See more at: http://www.threeweeks.co.uk/article/ed2013-theatre-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-the-nihal-theatre-company-with-louise-chantal-festival-highlights/#sthash.e61ILvgg.dpuf
Words and communication are at the heart of this tale and the text does an excellent job of conveying hard-to-express feelings, with speech written as poetry. – See more at: http://www.threeweeks.co.uk/article/ed2013-theatre-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-the-nihal-theatre-company-with-louise-chantal-festival-highlights/#sthash.e61ILvgg.dpuf

A Younger Theatre FOUR STARS 18/08/2013

“One brilliant actress with a simple but beautiful story, and really that is all you need.”

http://www.ayoungertheatre.com/edinburgh-fringe-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-nihal-theatre-company/

 

 Brits Off Broadway 2014 Reviews

Jaye Griffiths plays the mother with such perfection that I would not be surprised if many people thought that she really was her. Her connection to Nihal seems palpable as her eyes flicker towards his photo which stands at the edge of the stage, and she keeps her emotions perfectly in balance to make sure that the play does not erupt too quickly – giving away just enough to keep you invested but saving the cascades of heartfelt fury and sadness for just the right moments. – See more at: http://www.ayoungertheatre.com/edinburgh-fringe-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-nihal-theatre-company/#sthash.LBEKUQSc.dpuf
Jaye Griffiths plays the mother with such perfection that I would not be surprised if many people thought that she really was her. Her connection to Nihal seems palpable as her eyes flicker towards his photo which stands at the edge of the stage, and she keeps her emotions perfectly in balance to make sure that the play does not erupt too quickly – giving away just enough to keep you invested but saving the cascades of heartfelt fury and sadness for just the right moments. – See more at: http://www.ayoungertheatre.com/edinburgh-fringe-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-nihal-theatre-company/#sthash.LBEKUQSc.dpuf
Jaye Griffiths plays the mother with such perfection that I would not be surprised if many people thought that she really was her. Her connection to Nihal seems palpable as her eyes flicker towards his photo which stands at the edge of the stage, and she keeps her emotions perfectly in balance to make sure that the play does not erupt too quickly – giving away just enough to keep you invested but saving the cascades of heartfelt fury and sadness for just the right moments. – See more at: http://www.ayoungertheatre.com/edinburgh-fringe-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-nihal-theatre-company/#sthash.LBEKUQSc.dpuf
Jaye Griffiths plays the mother with such perfection that I would not be surprised if many people thought that she really was her. Her connection to Nihal seems palpable as her eyes flicker towards his photo which stands at the edge of the stage, and she keeps her emotions perfectly in balance to make sure that the play does not erupt too quickly – giving away just enough to keep you invested but saving the cascades of heartfelt fury and sadness for just the right moments. – See more at: http://www.ayoungertheatre.com/edinburgh-fringe-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-nihal-theatre-company/#sthash.LBEKUQSc.dpuf
Jaye Griffiths plays the mother with such perfection that I would not be surprised if many people thought that she really was her. Her connection to Nihal seems palpable as her eyes flicker towards his photo which stands at the edge of the stage, and she keeps her emotions perfectly in balance to make sure that the play does not erupt too quickly – giving away just enough to keep you invested but saving the cascades of heartfelt fury and sadness for just the right moments. – See more at: http://www.ayoungertheatre.com/edinburgh-fringe-review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-with-jaye-griffiths-nihal-theatre-company/#sthash.LBEKUQSc.dpuf

TheaterMania 6/04/2014
“Griffiths does an impeccable job carrying the weight of the play on her back. She dives headfirst into this rollercoaster of emotional peaks and valleys, landing the immensity of them all while also doing service to the aural nature of Gupta’s prose. The captivating clarity of her voice meets the demands of Gupta’s sweeping language, evoking the crisp delivery of a Shakespearean monologue. Slater directs the minimalist work with an equally slight hand, allowing Gupta’s words to ring clearly through Griffiths’ performance.”
Woman Around Town 7/04/2014
“Jaye Griffiths is magnificent!”
Theater Reviews Limited
“Drama at its best and not to be missed.”

Blogcritics FIVE STARS

‘It is emotionally searing, yet numbing. It is cathartic and exhausting. In short, it tries one’s range of feeling and then probes deeper until it strikes raw nerve…Through the combined and attentive efforts of playwright, actor, director and creative team, I came to know Rahila Gupta, Nihal and the vitality of their transcendent love. Theirs is a love I will not easily forget.’

 

http://ht.ly/vB5s8

Ethan Kanfer 15/4/14

 

“Though it does provoke some powerful emotions, this taut, 70-minute monologue takes a refreshingly unsentimental and truthful approach.”

http://ethankanfer.wordpress.com/2014/04/15/review-dont-wake-me-the-ballad-of-nihal-armstrong-by-rahila-gupta-directed-by-guy-slater/

Bidisha- Feminist Writer writes a blog article about the London tour of the play.

 

Rahila Gupta writes a guest blog for Mumsnet on the battles and breakthroughs of bringing up a disabled child.

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/bloggers/1778857-Guest-blog-from-the-author-of-Dont-Wake-Me-on-healing-after-the-loss-of-her-son?

Rahila Gupta reflects on the process of writing a ballad as a way of dealing with Nihal’s death.                      

http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/jun/17/ballad-of-my-sons-struggle-rahila-gupta?commentpage=1

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