Sparks is a new play by writer-performer Jessica Butcher exploring grief, loss, worth, love and fantasy. It runs during VAULT Festival 2018 between Wednesday 21 and Sunday 25 February 2018.
Butcher paints a witty and entertaining portrait of dating in the modern age: our romances, our shortcomings, and how desperately we will use any distraction to shy away from grief and loneliness.
After the loss of her Mother to Multiple Sclerosis, Butcher decided to explore the impact of grief and how it works in our minds and consciousness. As a universal emotion, Sparks opens the door to grief and welcomes it in for a proper conversation. Acclaimed singer and songwriter Anoushka Lucas creates an original score for the play which she performs live on stage during the show. Sparks is directed by Jessica Edwards.
Butcher plays Lila, our guide through the story as we follow her whirlwind romance – the first meet, dates, fucks, fights, breakups. We watch as it falls apart. We are the best friend and confidante, and she leads us through her exploits with great humour. But as we navigate through the multiple realities along the way – what really happened between her and X, what might have happened and a fantasy version – we discover her grieving heart and the uncertainty of how to move on.
Jessica Butcher explains: “I wrote Sparks because I wanted to talk about grief and being a woman in this world, and how the patriarchy lives in us and has been inherited from generations of misogyny. I wanted to make someone who was confronting all the different sides of herself. She is kind, funny, weird, sexy, horrible and confused. I want to explore how our minds work with fantasy and cruel reality. I want to dive into Love. This play is for my Mum.”