Paper Birds to tour new show Ask Me Anything

Published: 11 December 2019
Reporter: Steve Orme

“A celebration of honesty and vulnerability”: Ask Me Anything

The Paper Birds is to tour Ask Me Anything, a new immersive show featuring real-life verbatim stories in which actors become agony aunts for young people.

The Leeds-based company, the “UK’s leaders of verbatim theatre with a political and social slant”, devised Ask Me Anything after being inspired by reading “problem pages” in magazines.

The Paper Birds invited young people living in an era of mobile phones and Google to ask them anything. The show explores themes including cyber addition, self-expression, peer pressure, sisterhood and youth suicide.

Set in a teenage bedroom, Ask Me Anything features live video streaming and original live music from singer-songwriter Rosie Doonan.

Jemma McDonnell, co-director of The Paper Birds, said, “when we reached out and asked young people to write to us, we had no idea if any teenagers actually would! We were in equal measure thrilled and petrified when the letters began to come back in the post.

“What really struck us was the absolute honesty and vulnerability within the letters. Ask Me Anything is a celebration of this honesty and vulnerability as well as messiness, imperfection, growth, mistakes, trials, experiments and risking it all.”

Ask Me Anything, The Paper Birds’ 13th show, opens in Newcastle from 30 January until 8 February 2020. It will be presented in London as part of the VAULT Festival from 12 until 16 February before touring to Guildford, York, Birmingham, Brighton, Canterbury and Plymouth until 20 June.