Covid and Me

Written by Jonathan Hall, Judith Johnson, Sarah Daniels, Farah Najib, Leanne Allen, Oladipo Agboluaje, Sudha Bhuchar / Produced by Theatre of Debate

“These are wonderful. Candid and thought provoking  and helpful. Deserve to be seen far and wide . Why aren’t things like this shown on TV? Great work by Theatre of Debate”
– Simon Denegri, OBE Executive Director of The Academy of Medical Sciences

“The Covid and Me monologues are powerful as you feel in a one to one conversation with the actor, as if you are sat across a table and hearing them speak.”
– Dr William van’t Hoff Chief Executive Officer at the NIHR Clinical Research Network Coordinating Centre

The National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) commissioned TOD to co-produce the Covid and Me Monologues in partnership with Leeds University (led by Prof Sue Pavitt) to show how people from underserved communities have been affected by the Covid Pandemic and to underline the importance of COVID-19 research in developing treatments and vaccines for all.

The playwrights participated in a series of generator workshops that explored the barriers to involvement in research studies from the perspective of the members of the underserved communities.

Inspired by  the lived-in experiences of the participants, the playwrights created 10 authentic characters, who appear in 13 original monologues:

  • ‘Shoulder to Shoulder’ (Asif) by Sudha Bhuchar performed by Peter Singh
  • ‘Crossing the line’ (Varsha) by Sudha Bhuchar performed by Shaheen khan
  • ‘Carrots and Marigolds’ (Ed) by Jonathan Hall  performed by David Sterne
  • ‘Chicken Pepper Soup’ (Ify) by Farah Najib performed by Adaya Henry
  • ‘The Call’  (Trudy) by Sarah Daniels performed by Clare Perkins
  • ‘Important Person’ (Ollie) by Judith Johnson performed by Blaine Kelly
  • ‘Awkward Fit’ (Kirsty) by Leanne Allen  performed by Cherylee Houston
  • ‘Hugs’  (Mandy). By Judith Johnson performed by Bella Hamblin
  • ‘27 Across’  (Shelia ) by Jonathan Hall performed by Amanda Orton
  • ‘I can hear you now’ (Jide) by Oladipo Agboluaje performed by Tunde Euba
  • ‘Vacca’ (Ify)  by Farah Najib performed by Adaya Henry
  • ‘Why not Me’ (Varsha) by Sudha Bhuchar performed by  Shaheen Khan
  • ‘Tie up your Camel ’ (Asif) by Sudha Bhuchar performed by Peter Singh

Each monologue explores the characters experience of living in a world which has been changed by the Covid 19 pandemic, capturing  their thoughts and feelings about taking part in Covid 19 treatment and vaccine trials.

These films are fictional pieces of storytelling drama funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The content of each film is an artistic interpretation based on authentic patient voices and therefore, the views expressed are not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care , Leeds University or Theatre of Debate.

Launch the site to watch and share all the monologues. If you are a teacher, community educator or a parent you will find additional information that has been written to support you sharing the monologues with your communities or your friends and loved ones.