Imagine If

Press

This play follows the traumatic and tumultuous dynamics of an abusive relationship between a young couple from Leeds, Rosa and Niko, played by Francesca Joy and Prince Plockey with Ursula Mohan playing Rosa’s Grandma, Lily.

From the start of the play the audience is gripped in the thrilling rapture, observing what feels initially like the innocent intensity of a new love connection. Read more here…

Imagine If’s You Forgot the Mince presents a moving descent into an abusive relationship. ‘Love Me Tender’ by Elvis Presley ominously plays as we enter the space, setting the tone for this 60-minute piece that explores insecurities, violence and what it means to be in love with someone.

This ‘boy meets girl’ tale is set in Leeds, where Rosa (Francesca Joy) lives with her Grandma Lily (Ursula Mohan) when a window salesman called Niko (Prince Plockey) visits them. Their meeting leads to them becoming involved in a whirlwind romance that occurs alongside Rosa gearing up to attend university in London, something that kickstarts Niko’s insecurities. Read more here…

Amazingly thought-provoking, powerful and emotional, You Forgot The Mince was performed in Swindon on Saturday at the intimate Shoebox Theatre.

Theatre company and registered charity Imagine If was behind this production, which took us on a raw and honest journey between two young people, showing how their love for one another turned sour.

The play was inspired by real life events and told the tale of a modern abusive relationship.  Read more here…

The last time I left the theatre completely overwhelmed was in 2014 after National Theatre’s The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable.

For their latest production Leeds-based production company Imagine If operate on much a smaller scale than the National Theatre, so you can imagine my jubilation when I was left stunned by a cast of three at Swindon’s Shoebox Theatre.

You Forgot the Mince is a ground-breaking production which delves into, and explores, the complexities of abusive relationships. Read more here…

5-star Review

Imagine If’s production ‘You Forgot the Mince’ is the thought-provoking play, written by Leeds theatre maker Francesca Joy, that explores a modern-day abusive relationship. ‘You Forgot the Mince’ is mid UK tour and has recently had a successful month long run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

The 70-minute long drama begins at a house in Leeds, where the 19-year-old Rosa lives with her grandma, Lily (Ursula Mohan) since her troubled mother Claire died some 3 years back. Rosa (played by Francesca Joy) is a bright young woman preparing to leave her home city of Leeds and go off to university in London. Niko (Prince Plockey) is a door-to-door window salesman surviving on commission, who infiltrates their lives after coercing Rosa to accept a ‘free, no obligation consultation’. Just as Rosa is looking forward to an exciting new future at University in London and living in Camden, she falls head over heels in love with the local lad Niko (who never made it past year 9 at school). Read more here…

 

4-star Review

Imagine If’s latest production You Forgot The Mince tells the story of a modern day abusive relationship. It’s a bleak reality for all too many, but the show is shot through with a warmth that belies the subject matter.

The hour long drama begins at a house in Leeds, where nineteen year old Rosa lives with her grandma, Lily. Niko (Prince Plockey) is a door-to-door window salesman surviving on commission. His cajoling of Rosa – by turns playful, then less so – to accept the ‘free, no obligation consultation’ is the first hint of a tendency to coercion. Read more here…

Summary – 4 stars: ‘Domestic abuse show shocks and informs in equal measure’

There are so many shows at every Edinburgh Fringe that one might band together as ‘issue’ plays – productions that look at a problem in society, and make a play about it. This year I’ve been thinking about this a lot; about what the purpose of this is, about who we are making this art for, and about whether or not we should be making it at all. Imagine If Theatre’s production of You Forgot The Mince sets all of these issues aside. The play is a harrowing tale about domestic abuse and the way relationships can shatter out of our control, and alongside their Fringe show, the company are also raising money for a run in male prisons. Their money is clearly where their mouth is. Read more here…

Verdict – 4 stars: Passionate performances and slick staging elevate this story of domestic abuse

Starkly examining an abusive, co-dependent relationship, You Forgot the Mince is a grim and affecting story lifted by moments of real warmth. Inspired by research, verbatim accounts and writer Francesca Joy’s own experiences, the play follows teenagers Rosa and Niko, who become trapped in a self-perpetuating cycle of love and hate.

Joy’s script sketches out the story in a flurry of short scenes. While this brevity can feel simplistic, truthful details and flashes of blank poetry make each sequence resonant. As Rosa, Joy shares a remarkable, effervescent chemistry with Prince Plockey’s sweet but unstable Niko, making their romance believable and their suffocating need for one another entirely convincing. Read more here…

A RAW, compelling drama about domestic violence, developed in consultation with people involved in abusive relationships, is staged in Bradford next week.

You Forgot the Mince is a powerful portrait of an intense, passionate and ultimately abusive relationship that spirals out of control.

It is the debut play by Yorkshire writer Francesca Joy, who spent two years researching and developing it. Her research included interviews with victims of domestic abuse and she attended focus groups with former offenders and counselling groups with men who have a history of violence against women. She also spoke to prisoners, prison officers and probation workers, and did a week-long training course with Safe Ground at the National Offender Management Unit. Read more here…

Imagine If are a company with their heart on the beat of the things that make the genre so vital: realistic, frenetic, candid and well-observed – a resounding success.

Imagine If’s You Forgot the Mince is a deeply moving and dynamic piece of cutting-edge theatre. Francesca Joy’s remarkably realistic performance as a fiery but also naïve student begins in her grandma’s’s home when a door-to-door salesman charms her with his spiel. This is Niko (Ashley Gerlach) who is a lovable rogue who hides his darker side (that includes petty crime and his mother’s crack cocaine habit) preferring to rely on his handsome good looks and fine masculine figure to win a chance with Rosa. Read more here…

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