Family Tree for Lakeland

Published: 12 April 2023
Reporter: David Upton

Family Tree

Family Tree is a new drama exploring race, health and the environment, inspired by one of the most influential women of modern times, Henrietta Lacks.

It comes to Keswick’s Theatre By The Lake, May 11, and is directed by Matthew Xia (Rice, One Night in Miami…, Blue/Orange, Shebeen, The Wiz, Hey Duggee), the award-winning artistic director of Actors Touring Company.

Originally commissioned by ATC and the Young Vic Theatre in 2020, as an outdoor work-in-progress piece it was showcased at the 2021 Greenwich + Docklands International Festival.

This new production will be the fully-realised stage play and is part of a 13-week national tour taking in 12 venues until June 17 from Keswick to Plymouth, via London, Liverpool and Bristol.

Henrietta Lack’s HeLa cell line forms the basis of the most important medical research and breakthroughs across the last 70 years, from cancer and HIV to COVID. Denied her place in history, Family Tree brings Henrietta’s legacy to life.

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