“It’s not much to look at, is it? A simple pill much like any other but it is so much more. This one is made of metal and if I took it, it would change my life forever.” – from Gods and Kings
A man leaves a consultation room facing a choice. It should be a pretty straightforward choice. Take the pill and live. Don’t take the pill and die. But the decision proves to be more difficult; does he risk losing his life or risk no longer being the person he has been all of his life? Challenging perceptions of what it is to live with mental illness, Gods & Kings is a bracingly honest and often hugely funny real-life story.
“It’s smart, it’s acerbic, it’s generous, it’s funny, it’s genuinely moving.” – Kaite O’Reilly
Written and directed by Paul Whittaker, Gods and Kings takes a us from the day of his diagnosis through the three weeks he was given to decide whether to take Lithium or not –
The singer Kurt Cobain famously penned a track on his Nevermind album dedicated to the substance which, as he later put a shotgun in his mouth, was an ode to its medicinal properties, not its ability to both store and release electricity to a wide variety of devices. – From Gods and Kings
What they are saying about Gods and Kings:
The dramatic monologue is paced and delivered with a transfixing intensity, perfect pacing and just the right amount of, well, exuberance and occasional anger, that this story requires and the rapport with the audience was extraordinary. – Mike Smith for Arts Scene in Wales
Attending the play without really knowing what to expect we actually found it to be a thought provoking, powerful, emotional and riveting portrayal of mental illness with the right amount of humour to lift what could have been an otherwise dark evening of entertainment. Having worked in the NHS for over twenty years including a number of years associated with mental health care it was all disturbingly familiar. The set and lighting were designed in a way that did not detract from the play and only added to the well written and portrayed reality. – Zoe, Cardiff
Whittaker’s story is an important one, and perhaps even more important now than it ever was. The script has an excellent ear for humour. – Gary Raymond for Wales Arts Review
We watched this performance via closed captioning and Benn Tinniswood who did the captions did a fantastic and honest job of it. We all loved it and there were plenty of discussions afterward. It was positive and I thought using the closed captions was a massive success. Lets’ hope we see more of this! – Jonny Cotsen -deafclub
This project is supported by Disability Arts Cymru, Arts Council of Wales and Sherman Cymru.