Hard to Swallow is an adaptation of Maureen Dunbar’s award winning book/film Catherine. It charts her daughter’s uneven battle with anorexia and her family’s difficulty in coping with it. It was premiered at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 1989 and, the following year was invited to be performed at the Royal National Theatre on the world famous Olivier stage. Hard to Swallow has been performed across the world achieving popularity in both schools and One Act Drama Festivals. In 2016 it was selected as one of the set texts for Eduqas’ new GCSE Drama 9-1 specification.
Students are now expected to study the way Hard to Swallow was developed and presented. This fascinating story has now been uncovered. Mark’s book uses vivid reminiscences of his Oaklands Youth Theatre cast to describe the development of the play and those early performances. Adrian New goes on to reveal StopWatch Theatre Company’s professional tour which followed in 1990. Karen Latto a former Exam Board Subject Specialist has added an invaluable scheme of work to be used by teachers who teach the play as part of the new Eduqas GCSE (9-1) Drama exam and other specifications.
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