A tale of isolation, loneliness and grief, Where the Crow Flies tells the story of Carrie (Kiera Lucchesi), a women blackballed from her community after her husband is sent to prison for a crime which he claims he did not commit. Her life seems to be falling apart at the seams before she finds companionship with a new neighbour, Emily (Angela Darcy), who moves in next door.
Commissioned by Sense over Sectarianism, playwright Lisa Nicoll based Where the Crow Flies on a series of interviews conducted in Blackburn, West Lothian. Participants from Action Blackburn and Blackburn Family Centre were interviewed over a six week period in order to portray an accurate picture of community life. “I have a passion for working with the community,” said Nicoll, speaking at an open rehearsal ahead of the play’s premiere on Tuesday 18 October. “I loved working within the Blackburn community, because everyone was supportive… they created the inspiration for the story.”
Working alongside the women she interviewed, Nicoll wrote and redrafted Where the Crow Flies until its contributors agreed that the play accurately represented life in their close knit community. One of the contributors said: “When we were talking about storylines, we used people who we knew, and put them into the characters… Everything is real. Anybody who watches it will be able to relate to it in some way.”
Another community member described how she had only moved to Blackburn four months ago and wanted to help Nicoll portray the feelings of isolation, friendship, loneliness and new beginnings: “I had no family in Blackburn at all… my husband works offshore, so a lot of the time I am home alone with my wee boy.” She went on to describe how she had struck up a companionship with another of the parents at the family centre – despite only knowing her for a short length of time, she already considers her a best friend. Her story was one that Nicoll said she wanted to bring through in her writing, while director Beth Morton spoke about her straightforward approach to depicting the two central characters’ issues, pasts and blossoming friendship.
Where the Crow Flies is touring as part of the 10th Scottish Mental Health and Film Festival. It premieres on Tuesday 18 October at the Scottish Storytelling Centre, with further tour dates in Giffnock, Bathgate, Paisley and Glasgow's Tron Theatre. Full listings below.
It is the first production by new Glasgow-based company In Motion Theatre, which was founded by director and producer Jordan Blackwood, actor and writer Daniel Cameron, and writer and producer Lisa Nicoll.
by Matt Shields
SCOTTISH STORYTELLING CENTRE
Tue 18 & Wed 19 Oct
Scottish Storytelling Centre, 43-45 High Street, Edinburgh EH1 1SR
£10 | £6
0300 300 1210
EASTWOOD PARK THEATRE
Fri 21 Oct
Eastwood Park Theatre, Rouken Glen Road, Giffnock G46 6UG
£13 | £11
0141 577 4970
BATHGATE REGAL THEATRE
Tue 25 Oct
24 North Bridge Street, Bathgate EH48 4PS
01506 630 085 | BATHGATEREGAL.CLOUDVENTURE.CO.UK
Paisley Arts Centre
Wed 26 Oct
Paisley Arts Centre, 15 New Street, Paisley PA1 1EZ
£10 | £6
0300 300 1210 | RENFREWSHIRELEISURE.COM
Wed 2 & Thu 3 Nov
63 Trongate, Glasgow G1 5HB
£10 | £7.50
0141 552 4267 | TRON.CO.UK