The Crunch Plays

The future of food is one of the biggest challenges on our plate. Our relationship with food is changing, affecting our health and the world around us in new and uncertain ways. The Wellcome Trust has launched The Crunch to encourage the nation to explore these changes and inspire us all to create a recipe for a happier, healthier future. The activities are taking place in summer 2016.

Theatre of Debate has been commissioned by the Wellcome Trust's The Crunch project to create 10 short plays to be performed by young people and children, five for primary schools and five for secondary schools and FE colleges.

Listen to downloadable music composed by Alex Parsons for the Crunch plays
Watch hints and tips on how to use Movement in the Crunch plays by Robin Guiver
Download the scripts and resources from the Crunch website

Crunch Plays For Primary Schools

Basmati Basmati by Jonathan Hall

Choose this script to explore biodiversity in a simple way through exciting movement and music.

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Beloved Burger by Rhiannon Tise

Choose this script for a class that like to do a lot of movement and will enjoy creating a dream-like state for performance. It explores the impact of eating so much meat and will help pupils understand the effect this has on their planet.

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Day of Temptation by Judith Johnson
Choose this script for a focus on how to be healthy one day at time through a fun exploration of what pupils face every day through the temptations of the unhealthy food around them.

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For Richer for Poorer by Adam Hughes
Choose this script to explore how we can both under- and over-eat and what this does for our health. This play looks at food in India but resonates with other countries across the world.

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The Lament of the Green bean by Elinor Cook

Choose this script to explore how other countries provide food for us in the UK and the impact this has on the environment.

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Crunch Plays For Secondary Schools and FE colleges

Fields and Fields by Jonathan Hall

Choose this play if you have a smaller group of students who all want a speaking role. (The play can lend itself to a cast of 30.) The play explores agro-biodiversity in different cultures and countries throughout so gives students an opportunity to learn information through playing a role. Lots of freedom in this script to put your own spin on how it is performed.

Casting: Flexibility within the casting except for 2 of the roles which need to be played by the same actors throughout. Can work with groups of students from 8-30 depending on how you want to stage it.

Drama Skills: Ensemble work, multi-roling, interesting ways of staging, movement.

Download the Script and Resources

The Fat of the Land by Adam Hughes

Choose this script if you have strong male actors that can carry the play and a group of creative students who would benefit from working as an ensemble to present a piece of theatre. The play explores undernutrition and overnutrition and contains a lot of information to spark discussion and split opinion.

Casting: 2 male key speaking roles with 2 female supporting roles make up the main bulk of the play. There are flexible roles for the rest of the class that can be made as little or as much of as you see fit. The playwright has suggested between 8-20 roles where the lines can be divided up in any way that works for your interpretation.

Drama Skills: Staging in the round, ensemble work, soundscaping.

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Feed Me by Rhiannon Tise

Choose this play if you have several strong actors that would like key roles and a group of students willing to try multi-roling to tell the story. The play explores two very different worlds exploring the impact of food consumption on the planets resources and provides a great basis for discussion and further exploration into the topic.

Casting: 9 main speaking roles that are reasonably equally divided, 3 further roles central to the story and an ensemble needed for several other roles throughout the play.

Drama Skills: Physical theatre, multi-roling, soundscaping, ensemble work.

Download the Script and Resources
The Super Safe Environment Compound

Choose this script if you have several strong students keen for speaking roles and a creative group of young people that want to explore staging and transitioning between multiple locations. The play introduces them to a world in the not too distant future and really gets them thinking about the choices they make about food.

Casting: 8 key lead roles representing modern day teenagers and those in the future with approx. 5 or 6 supporting roles that can be adapted. All students can be involved in the performance through soundscaping and physical theatre.

Drama Skills: Soundscaping, split scene, physical theatre, ensemble work and complex staging.

Download the Script and resources
The Chicken Temptation by Judith Johnson

Choose this script if you have some strong actors who would like to take on lead roles. The play demands a lot from the ensemble which is a great skill for students to develop. Exploring the impact of the obesogenic environment, this play also creates key discussion triggers and will spark debate and difference of opinion. Some really great roles for students to play and flexibility in the way it is staged could be an exciting project for students to tackle.

Casting: 8 larger speaking roles, 1 female lead who is telling her story. Several other supporting roles with speaking parts and enough parts for up to 30 students as part of an ensemble that plays school students, people at the summer fayre etc.

Drama Skills: Multi-roling, ensemble work, direct address, movement.

Download the Script and Resources


But I'm not a Drama Teacher
Don’t worry if you’re not an expert at directing or doing movement – we are offering you lots of support. Each script comes with:

  • one or two short films (of no more than 5 minutes) produced by professional Movement Director Robin Guiver illustrating how to use movement in your production.
  • specially composed music and sound effects created by Composer Alex Parsons to download and use in your production.
  • Director’s Notes which include learning outcomes, links to the curriculum, more in depth information about the theme of your chosen play, along with hints and tips on how stage the play for a workshop performance.
Find out more and download
How do I find out more about The Crunch project for schools and colleges?

Every school and FE college in the UK will have received a free kit in May 2016,packed full of scientific equipment, lesson notes and practical activities for every age group to help students explore the links between our food, our health and our planet. Find out more about the kit

How do I find out more about The Crunch?

Coming in 2016, The Crunch is an exciting year of activities, experiences and discussions about our food, our health and our planet. Through The Crunch we want to help people think about how our food, our health and our planet are all interconnected. By examining our relationships with food, and exploring cutting edge research, we can think about how we can eat in ways that can keep our planet and ourselves healthy.

Watch the Crunch Film

Theatre of Debate is a company limited by guarantee and registered in England (09299573) and a registered charity (1164944). Registered office: Theatre of Debate, 19 Battlebridge Court, Wharfdale Rd, London N1 9UA