Audio drama inspired by Kilburn, Derbyshire

Published: 4 June 2021
Reporter: Steve Orme

Playwright and producer Simon Marshall Credit: Chris Webb
John Booker who plays Charlie Credit: Phil Sharp
Louis Greatorex who plays Grant Credit: Tristram Kenton

An audio drama written and performed by a Derbyshire creative team and inspired by experiences of young people has been released as a free download.

The production team of kilburn (not london) worked with members of Plus One, Derby’s care-experienced young people’s creative group, Derbyshire LGBT+’s youth services groups and students from John Flamsteed Community School, Denby to help inspire the characters and plot.

The 55 minute-long kilburn (not london) tells the story of teenagers Charlie and Grant, played by Derbyshire actors John Booker and Louis Greatorex. The characters live in the small Derbyshire town of Kilburn and the play explores themes of falling in love for the first time, identity and how to find yourself in the middle of nowhere.

The script was written by Derbyshire playwright and producer Simon Marshall and directed by Derby Theatre associate artist Omar Khan.

The audio drama features original music by Lucy James, another Derbyshire artist, who uses her personal and geographical experience to influence the music.

Marshall said, “I love writing about Derbyshire because it’s so rarely represented on stage or screen or in the media.

“I started thinking about the friendships and relationships that made me who I am as well as how I see similar experiences in the young people I work with.

“It was essential to draw on the feelings and experiences of local young people to write the play—particularly members of Plus One who have lived-experience of the care system—to create authentic and interesting characters in a place that many young people can relate to.

“I do really feel there’s lots to be said about telling stories about overlooked places, especially from queer and care-experienced perspectives.

“Moving forwards, we also want to encourage the public to explore their own creativity and send us their stories, poems, artwork, videos or music that respond to the themes in kilburn (not london).”

The audio play is available to download at the kilburn (not london) web site.