A performance created from your song dedications and declarations of love, past and present, join us online via Zoom for Love Letters at Home as we raise our glasses to long lost loves and current lovers, to mums and dads, and to absent friends.
Love Letters at Home was an intimate participatory piece of theatre in which the audience and performers offered dedications and declarations of love, past and present. It was collaboratively authored with its audience, who temporarily became a community of close friends across the performance.
Before the show, people who booked tickets were invited to send in music requests, to write dedications to those they love or care about, and these were worked into the event each night. We tried, with care, to only speak the words written by those in the audience – each performance was unique to that group of people, their memories, their current and past loves or friendships, their emotions, laid bare for everyone to witness, acknowledge and support.
It shifted between theatre and a real social event; dedications were spoken, toasts were made, speeches were given, songs were sung and dances danced, on behalf of the audience and with them.
Uninvited Guests are Paul Clarke, Richard Dufty, and Jessica Hoffmann. Formed in Bristol in 1998, the company’s work has toured nationally and internationally. They create entertaining and provocative performances that combines high-tech with low tech, the visceral with the virtual. Uninvited Guests work in various contexts, focussing mainly on theatre but also producing installation and audio walks. Their recent work has blurred the line between theatre and social festivities, with audiences joining us in events that are celebratory and critical of these times.
|Stephen Joseph Theatre||Thursday 1 October||7.30pm|
|Derby Theatre||Thursday 15 October||7pm|
|Hampshire Cultural Trust – You can purchase tickets from Ashcroft Arts Centre, Forest Arts Centre, or West End Centre||Friday 16 October||7.30pm|
|Oxford Playhouse||Thursday 22 October||7pm|
|Oxford Playhouse||Friday 23 October||7pm|
"The dedications are manifestly authentic and heartbreakingly sincere. At the performance I attended, there were testimonies of love for an adored girlfriend; for a disabled child; for a paternally abused and suicidal sister. I don't think I have ever wept so much in a show, just seeing others quietly trying not to cry when it came to their contribution... The sense of collective sympathy created (without any group-therapy chat) is profoundly comforting, and it's combined with surprisingly delightful light relief."
Independent on Sunday
"⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Though each dedication will be specific to somebody in the room, the anonymity turns 'Love Letters' into a communal experience: at this mercurial show's best, every declaration of love and sorrow resonates with everyone in the room. It is a marvellous piece of theatre that blowtorches away Britishness and forces you to feel."
"The most powerful theatrical event I saw was all about music and how it operates on our memories. Uninvited Guests and Fuel presented Love Letters Straight From Your Heart in which an audience limited to 30 were involved in sharing love stories, singing along and staring into each other's eyes. Almost everyone wept."
The Financial Times
"⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ There is something so sincere and so utterly simple about Uninvited Guests' piece that you can't help but fall in love with it, not least because it makes you fall in love with everybody else in the room.... At one point Hoffmann recreates the million‐miles‐an‐hour rush of first love; at another Dufty, backed by Kate Bush's Hounds of Love, cries and shouts "I'm missing you" like a miserable dog howling at the moon. But the very heart of this show is the audience and their dedications, often written with an affecting poetic clarity. Initially, you feel voyeuristic as loves and heartbreaks are revealed; after a while you simply feel part of a huge community as lives, hopes, dreams and sadnesses are offered up in a way that is blisteringly honest and unvarnished, but also entirely safe because of the anonymity."