Early rehearsal images have been released of the production of  Emily Jenkins’ new play Cookies at the Theatre Royal Haymarket on the 29th October. 

Cookies Ensemble_Pamela Raith Photography
(c) Pamela Raith Photography. 

Supported by Lily Allen, Ted Reilly, Maddy Hill and Lady Viola Grosvenor, acting as Ambassadors to the Cyberscene Project, this world premiere production is directed by Anna Ledwich and explores the digital world as seen through the eyes of young people.

Created through a series of theatre-based workshops, the Cyberscene Project has explored the key concerns and issues facing young people in today’s digital landscape, collaborating with 120 students across four London colleges.

The production itself will see 25 of the original 120 students will perform alongside a cast of established actors in Cookies. The cast includes: Leaphia Darko, Rujenne Green, Shala Nyx , Cristal Cole, Makir Ahmed, Bradley Cumberbatch and Joe Pierson.

Emily Jenkins_Pamela Raith Photography
 Emily Jenkins (c) Pamela Raith. 

Inspired by the true, heartfelt online stories of students, Cookies follows seven teenagers dealing with the effects of sexting, radicalisation, cyber bullying and our wider digital world…

Sosa, a tough, gay, streetwise Londoner finds solace in the tunes of her favourite rap artist, but her online world comes crashing down when she finally meets her idol.

Eva, an aspiring vlogger, splits with avid gamer Simon and is forced to deal with the devastating effects of sexting and repetitive online abuse.

Salena, infatuated with pop star Zayn Malik, starts an online friendship with another faceless superfan. As a result of their conversations the young Muslim woman begins to grapple with her faith and is persuaded to make a long journey to an unknown fate.

Cristal Cole, Leaphia Darko, Bradley Cumberbatch, Anna Ledwich and Rujenne Green_Pamela Raith Photography.jpg
(c) Pamela Raith. 

Lily Allen, Ted Reilly, Maddy Hill and Lady Viola Grosvenor will each take on a role in supporting the students involved with the Cyberscene Project by listening to their experiences, taking part in the Cyberscene workshops, offering advice and helping raise awareness of these issues.

Speaking of her involvement in the project singer Lily Allen said: “As someone who’s well aware of the potentially distressing aspects of being online, I’m thrilled to be working with and supporting the Cyberscene project and such a vibrant, inspiring group of young people. I believe that allowing them to tell their stories and share them so widely through the play Cookies will equip us all with the tools to combat the adverse effects of cyber bullying head-on.”

Cristal Cole, Shala Nyx and Leaphia Darko_Pamela Raith Photography.jpg
(c)Pamela Raith. 

The production will also feature set and costume design by Frankie Bradshaw, lighting by  Elliot Griggs and  sound and composition by Max Pappenheim.

Meanwhile, Cyberscene was created by the Theatre Royal Haymarket Masterclass Trust in partnership with The Pureland Foundation and children’s charity Kidscape. The project has been delivered under the artistic guidance of renowned British theatre director, Jonathan Church CBE.

Cookies will be performed at the Theatre Royal Haymarket on Sunday 29th October at 3pm and 6.30pm. For more information and to book tickets visit: http://www.trh.co.uk/whatson/cookies/

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