With uncertainty surrounding the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union, and the impact it could have on the British economy, one theatre group is helping audiences see the lighter side of current events.
“Brexit: the Musical” has opened in London — written by a political playwright, who says there’s something Shakespearean about the way the aftermath of the EU referendum has played out.
CCTV’s Natalie Powell reports from London.
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It’s a subject usually reserved for politicians and economists, but now the story of Britain’s departure from the European Union has been set to music.
The musical’s writer, a former financial reporter, says the concept and characters involved in UK politics, made Brexit an easy subject for a stage adaptation.
“Brexit just popped up. It really was a gift, mainly because there was so much clowning around after the vote. Boris, he’s an absolute gift on the stage,” Writer David Shirreff said.
The actor playing Brexiteer and now Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has one of the starring roles. He stayed in character for this interview.
“I’m very much looking forward to getting the message out to the people through the medium of song as well as gibberish,” Actor James Sanderson playing Boris Johnson said.
Other well-known players in the EU Referendum and its aftermath are also brought to life in this musical — such as David Cameron, Nigel Farage, Michael Gove and Theresa May.
The play’s writer admits that this political satire takes sharpest aim against those who campaigned for Brexit, as he himself voted to Remain. But Shirreff says he hopes all can laugh a little at this play.
“I’m not preaching I hope, I’d like to think that a Brexiteer who comes to this show isn’t going to think ‘well they’re just getting at me and 90% of the play is Anti-Brexit. It isn’t really,” he said.
“I’d like people to come away and be entertained first thing and it has made them think that this is a kind of Shakespearean kind of drama that has been going on.”
The play’s script has already been changed several times as a result of the political twists and turns following the EU referendum.
And the writer and cast say the performance will continue to evolve — in line with the political climate.