The Twits is a highly entertaining story that is for all the family. It tells the story of two people who continually try to outwit each other by playing nasty and cruel tricks on one another. This cruelty is extended to the animal kingdom where Mr and Mrs Twit see the capture of monkeys and birds as a means of serving their own greedy purpose. The adventure story is about how the monkeys escape from the Twits and overcome the injustice that is inflicted upon them. The play raises many questions about the broader issues of power, freedom, justice to the environment and the basic rights of all living creatures.
Happily, in this story the animals all survive and return to their native habitat, finding and enjoying their freedom once again. This production combines theatre and circus skills to create a fast, highly visual and entertaining spectacle. To achieve this, the Belgrade Theatre has worked with artists who have brought new disciplines to the company that have had a real impact on design, construction and the physical style of the play. The local young people who take part have skills in dance and acrobatics and have a real input into the creative process.
It is rare to have the opportunity to revisit a play three times, to be able to refine it and produce a genuinely high quality piece of theatre with, and for, young people. David Wood has written extensively about the need to create more work on this scale aimed at young audiences and involving young people. We hope to have helped to fulfil this ambition with The Twits.
Finally, we are delighted to be taking a Belgrade Theatre production on a national tour. We are very grateful to the Arts Council of England National Touring Programme for providing the subsidy to make this tour possible.