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Stage Editorial

deathshow19.jpg Death becomes them

The Death Show is a darkly comic journey of discovery and contemplation, exploring our universal relationship with death and dying, and you can see it at The Witham in Barnard Castle this February.

“Being brave / Lets no one off the grave. / Death is no different whined at than withstood.” That’s life and soul of the party Philip Larkin talking about snuffing it in his late masterpiece ‘Aubade’. He wasn’t really into death but I’m sure he would have appreciated a shot of ‘The Death Show’. It’s the work of Antonia Beck and Lucy Nicholls, who, like Larkin, are fellow thanatophones (ie death – they are not fans). In pulling it together they shadowed undertakers and talked to hospice patients, GPs and palliative care nurses. The resultant piece of theatre is anything but morbid as they invite audiences to celebrate their own mortality, to laugh, cry and generally flick the Vs at the grip reaper. Through humour and reflection they tackle this often-taboo subject with the kind of life-affirming gusto that’ll have you leaving The Witham with a huge smile splashed right across your chops.

The Death Show, Wednesday 27 February, The Witham, Barnard Castle, 7.30pm, £10 (£8 for 16 and under). thewitham.org.uk