We’re all excited about the start of season eleven of Doctor Who this weekend, and can’t wait to watch Jodie Whitaker wield the sonic screwdriver as the Thirteenth Doctor. But we’re perhaps most excited about the fact that one of our plays at PopOut Festival – Sticks and Stones – is by a writer from the new series, Vinay Patel.
Vinay graduated from Central School of Speech and Drama with an MA in writing and was initially attracted to the stage as a place to write and produce his own material. His first break came in 2014 with True Brits, a play balancing the elation of London 2012 with the devastation of 7/7. Following this success, he then went on to develop his first full-length piece for BBC television – Murdered By My Father – which was nominated for a BAFTA, with it’s lead Adeel Akhtar winning the BAFTA for best actor. Since then Vinay has produced work for stage and screen and was delighted to be given the chance to write for Doctor Who has he’s always been a fan of the genre. Vinay said:
“I grew up watching shows like Star Trek and Quantum Leap on the edge of my dad’s bed, and I loved how they managed to capture the imagination of a kid like me as well as acting as a moral compass. I never imagined that I’d get to write for Doctor Who – I was pretty thrilled.”
At roughly the same time as writing for Doctor Who, Vinay was commissioned by Paines Plough to create this piece for their touring pop-up theatre Roundabout. Following a month up at Edinburgh Festival Fringe and a mini-tour of the UK, Sticks and Stones, this “sharp, smart satire” (The Stage), is now being performed in Lincoln until Sunday 7 October. Like much of his work, the play seeks to inspire and spark change and explore the contradictions in our cultural narrative. When discussing Sticks and Stones in an interview with The Guardian, Vinay said “it’s about how we talk to each other about what is offensive or not…people get frustrated about having to explain themselves and their lives…. The world feels unstable [and] that uncertainty is what I wanted to bring into the play”
You can read more about Sticks and Stones here: lpac.co.uk/event/sticks-and-stones
Having received fantastic feedback up at the Fringe, Sticks and Stones is undoubtedly a fine introduction to Vinay’s writing style, so if you want a taste of his writing prior to Doctor Who later this autumn, then come along to PopOut this weekend (and iPlayer Doctor Who from Sunday 7 Oct).