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Bitesize Festival
Theatre, Bitesize


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Spider is an irreverent fast-paced romp with a deeply flawed character at it's heart. It explores themes of power, authority and manipulation set against a backdrop of shifting social and cultural values. For years Frank Dowling has had his acting students in his thrall. But two decades after starring in the West End hit, Spider, his vigour is waning. 

Set in a London drama school, we watch his students develop over the course of a year, their training culminating in an improvisational game set in Epping Forest. Here, over a few hot days in June, the students’ disillusionment gradually leads to an unravelling. The play asks what happens after you deconstruct your heroes and watches as the superior male falls from power. An energetic adventure story, it will leave audiences guessing until the end, but ultimately ask them if they can accept the leading character’s journey to redemption and whether his actions can be forgiven. 

“None of you have a voice. Staring at a glowing rectangle all day long. You squander your lives. Scrolling. Scrolling. I take your iPhone and I shit on it!” – Frank Dowling, Act 2


Written & directed by Jude Benning




Photo © Phil Gammon

Rating Information:
Contains some swearing, recreational drug and references to recreational drug use
Run time:
60 mins
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