A new play, which explores the reality of life for people who care for loved ones suffering from dementia, will be coming to Northamptonshire theatres next month.
Unforgettable, the show by Derby-based playwrite Tim Elgood, is based around his own experience helping his wife’s family to take care of her mother at home as she went through advanced stages of Alzheimer’s disease.
It will tour across Northamptonshire venues with the aim of raising awareness of life for family carers but, said Mr Elgood, with a humourous twist.
The 61-year-old award-winning writer and social-worker said: “It has been terribly challenging to do emotionally, and to do the subject justice without too much sentimentality.”
The story follows the lives of an adult brother and sister Jed and Rosie, who return to their family home to take care of their mother, who has dementia, when her husband dies.
Mr Elgood said: “Dementia manifests itself in different and personal ways depending on the sufferer, often because they return to distinct memories in their childhood, and we know so little about it.
“There’s also very little support offered to family members who have chosen to care for that person at home and are struggling to cope.
“But there can also be some hilarious moments and I have tried to bring out the humour in that, and between the characters who often find themselves at loggerheads, like any brother and sister.
“When you are dealing with situations life this, you have to laugh sometimes, otherwise you just go under.”
Despite 20 years of playwriting experience Mr Elgood said that, of all the plays he has written, this is the most “special” to him and “close to the heart”.
Play director Theresa Keogh said: “I jumped at the chance to be involved, as soon as I read the script.
“The response from our four actors has been overwhelming and they have also been able to lend some of their own experience.
“It has been difficult in places, but the writing is amazing and very truthful – I couldn’t think more highly of it.
“I think everyone will be able to find something to relate to.”
Unforgettable will come to Northamptonshire with East Midlands theatre company New Perspectives after opening for several nights in Derby.
Tuesday, June 2, at 7.45pm, The Castle, Wellingborough;
Thursday, June 4, at 7.30pm, Richmond Villages, Northampton;
Saturday, June 6, at 7.30pm: Old Village Hall.
For more information about Unforgettable, and for links to book tickets online, visit the New Perspectives website.