Rebecca Holbourn's play explores real-life experiences where consent isn't given or is assumed. It is the seemingly micro-violations that add up and can leave a lasting impact.
It's told from the perspective of a woman (Tamsin Harding) and a man (Arthur Perdreau), highlighting how stereotypes and peer pressure compound the problem of consent - or lack of it.
There is a range of incidents from playing kiss chase to having a stranger sat next to you on the bus and put their hand on your thigh when you were a child.
The play demonstrates the lasting impact these violations have: Anger, guilt, regret, problems with trust...
But it also shows how peer pressure, wanting to fit in and perceived gender norms all play a part in broken consent. It's in how friends celebrate certain situations their peers end up in, like it's a right of passage—and getting goaded into doing things you don't necessarily want to do.
Or when participation is assumed as blanket consent.
Then there is the lucky label if it's not a 'serious' sexual assault; why should it be lucky to get groped?
Violate demonstrates how blurred the line of consent is, and in a clever final scene which breaks the fourth wall, hints that the solution starts with discourse and awareness.
It's a raw, relatable, thought-provoking play that is a real conversation starter. I'm giving it ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Violated, Camden People's Theatre
Written and directed by Rebecca Holbourn
Cast: Tamsin Harding and Arthur Perdreau
Running time 45 minutes
Part of the Camden Fringe from 4-6 August; for more details and to book
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