The Possibility of Colour
a new play by Pete Carruthers
'For many, the Implant is an irresistible guarantee of eternal happiness; a life without suffering.
For others though, it’s a terrifying instrument of control, stripping them of what it means to be human, and increasingly forced upon a growing number of 'compulsory recipients'.
Designed by the AI-controlled 'Vigil' Corporation, The Implant is a new miracle device that
promises to cure all mental illness.
Will Joseph, his sister Aisling, or his best friend Helen, be able to decide which of them, if any,
should have the Implant?
And with the ever-looming presence of Vigil, do they even have a choice?
Who is ‘normal’?
Who gets to decide?'
The Possibility of Colour is an exciting new play written by Pete Carruthers, with input at every stage from mental health professionals, academics, student practitioners, and people with lived experience of the themes explored in the piece.
The play explores themes around mental health, voice hearing, synaesthesia, neurodiversity,
forced treatment, the use of Artificial Intelligence in healthcare and much much more.
As part of this initial tour, Health Education England (now merged with NHS England) provided funding for over 1,300 student nurses to watch the play and take part in post-show discussions as an official part of their training. The response from students and lecturers was overwhelmingly positive (see audience feedback comments and video below for some examples).
We are now working closely with NHS England and many schools of nursing all over the country to expand this approach as part of our 2024 national tour.
If you'd like to know more about the research being done alongside this innovative approach to nurse training, please check out the PhD Study page and feel free to contact Pete via our contact form.
'Still crying and laughing whilst talking about it the next day!'
'Incredible acting, I was really engrossed throughout, the level of acting between the three of you was incredible. Really powerful, really incredible attention to detail, really touching, I hope you enjoyed that standing ovation, it really grabbed people.'
'Oh my goodness!!! Wow wow wow! That was the best show I have ever seen! It was incredible!'
'It’s a beautiful dystopian human story that everyone should be aware of. Reminiscent of the curious incident of the dog in the night time.'
'Thank you for a truly amazing and powerful experience.'
'Stunning piece of theatre: in the writing, in the set design and absolutely thematically. It was the utter sincerity of every moment that really bowled me over to be honest... Uplifting, sharply observed, like an episode of Black Mirror that could make real positive social change. Thank you so much for making it.'
'I would recommend this to EVERYONE! I believe that this should go on a nationwide tour. It was truly terrifying, educational and entertaining. Blew my mind!'
'Thought provoking, emotionally moving, raising plenty of questions and concerns re current and future treatments, using artificial intelligence in healthcare, and lack of alternative methods to recovery. ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT! This play should be MANDATORY for at ALL mental health professionals, student mental health nurses, trainee nursing associates; and an option for other healthcare students.'
'It was amazing from start to finish. I went through every emotion possible.'
Average audience score - 4.8/5
National tour coming to a theatre near you in 2024!
A thank you note from Pete Carruthers following the 2022 production and tour.
Thank you to…
The entire creative team who have worked tirelessly to make the 2022 production and tour a success: Avy, Amy, Rachel, Connor, Isabel, Patch, Ed, Carly, Chloe P, Gareth, Verity, Orla, Chloe D and Matt - I'll be forever grateful, what a team!
Avy, for the constant support, creativity and passion you've ploughed into the project over the past 2 years. I couldn't have done it without you.
Catherine and Tine at Tin Cat Entertainment. Your generous support and encouragement has been invaluable.
All the actors, directors, producers, designers, stage managers, technicians and countless other brilliant theatre professionals who've helped to develop the play at several stages over the last 14 years!
The lived experience experts, including James Wannerton, Rufus May, Elisabeth Svanholmer, Kaitlyn Hova and many many more who have given their time, expertise and passion so generously every time I had 'just one more question' for them!
The academic partners, including Krissi Musiol, Mick McKeown, Jonathan Gadsby, Maria Turri, Helen Spandler, Anne Felton and so many more, who believed in the project and supported me tirelessly, even when my own belief was wobbling.
Health Education England, and particularly Ellie Gordon, who has championed the play since she first watched a rehearsed reading and has backed us with generous match funding, without which, this production would have not been possible.
The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), who have enrolled me onto their PhD by Portfolio programme and, like HEE, have provided essential funding for the PhD and the development of the play.
The University of Salford, UCLan, Edge Hill University, University of Manchester and Nottingham Trent University, all of which have supported me by hosting performances, screenings, script readings and other events throughout the development of the play.
New Adelphi Theatre, The Media Factory (UCLan), The Arts Centre (Edge Hill), Bolton Octagon, Harrogate Theatre, The Royal Exchange Theatre and Hope Mill Theatre, who have all hosted performances or readings of the play over the last seven years.
Our wonderful guest experts: James Wannerton, Rufus May, Elisabeth Svanholmer, Emma Goude, Helen Spandler, Mick McKeown, Jonathan Gadsby, Dr Maria Grazia Turri, Kaitlyn Hova, Krissi Musiol, Joachim Schnackenberg, Anne Felton, Juliette Gaunt, Luke Carruthers, Anne Darcy & Ellie Gordon.
Our Indiegogo backers!
Thank you to Nell Hardy, Adele Owen, Kathryn Evans, Anne Felton, Hayley Lever, Jeanette Dyson, Eve Holt, Catherine Fowler, Sharon Gowing, Ian Carruthers, Lois Carruthers, Maria Carruthers, Anna Carruthers, Philip Copeland, Helen Lofthouse, Brandon McGreavy, Anna Ward, Eleanor Longden, Charlotte Phillips, Marcus Douglas, Jane Mitchell, Michelle Ashton, Teri Centner, John Brady, Simon Metcalf, Alison Cavanagh, Lucy Pollitt, Ursula Fairbrother, Kara Guy, Naomi Sumner, Sumita Unjumbled, Angela Woods and all our other wonderful backers!