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"What would you do to save your son? Everything? Anything? Lie?”
Leeds Playhouse
21–29 feb
Live Theatre
3–4 mar
Derby Theatre
6–7 mar
Warwick Arts Centre
9-10 mar
Stephen Joseph Theatre
17–18 mar
Traverse Theatre
20–21 mar
Soho Theatre
24 mar–11 apr






feb-apr 2020

tiata fahodzi and Wrested Veil in association with Leeds Playhouse, Soho Theatre and Tara Finney Productions present seeds by mel pennant

What would you do to save your son? Everything? Anything? Lie?

On Michael Thomas’ birthday, his cake sits in his mother’s living room, its candles burning undisturbed. Jackie wants to clear her conscience, whilst Evelyn’s got a big speech to deliver on the 15th anniversary of Michael’s fatal stabbing. Are some things better left unsaid?

Sensitively written by Mel Pennant and shortlisted for the Alfred Fagon Award, seeds tells the story of two mothers united in sorrow, sharing the hardship of protecting their sons – one in life, and one in death.

Brought to you by the producers of the critically-acclaimed production of good dog by Olivier Award nominated Arinzé Kene, led by a female creative team, seeds explores the human story behind a tragedy through the eyes of those left behind.

seeds is generously supported by Arts Council England, The Foyle Foundation and The Carne Trust


There are no reviews or testimonials to show for this project
There are no reviews or testimonials to show for this project
There are no reviews or testimonials to show for this project


Judith Jacob

Television credits include: Dark Heart, British Rationals, Still Open All Hours, Rellik, The Five, Eastenders, Doctors, Holby City, Angels, My Family, No Problem, Provoked, Radio Roo, The Bill, The Queen’s Nose and The Real McCoy.

Film credits include: No Shade, Captain Philips and Respect.

Theatre credits include: The Interrogation Of Sandra Bland (Bush Theatre), Real McCoy (Heartbeat), An Evening With Gary Lineker (Hornchurch), Goldilocks (Hackney Empire), The Healing (Omnibus Theatre), Get Raunchy – BiBi Crew (Stratford East) and On A Level (Stratford East).

Penny Layden

Theatre includes: Jellyfish, Macbeth, My Country: A Work in Progress, Another World: Losing Our Children to Islamic State, An Oak Tree, Everyman, Edward II, Table, Timon of Athens (National Theatre); The Tempest, Roberto Zucco, Measure for Measure (RSC); Cleft (Rough Magic/Galway Festival), Sketching (Wilton's Music Hall), The Lorax, Cinderella (Old Vic), Bright Phoenix (Liverpool Everyman) Beryl (West Yorkshire Playhouse) Nora (Belgrade, Coventry), Lidless (Trafalgar Studios/Hightide Festival/Edinburgh), Draw Me Close, Vernon God Little, The Art of Random Whistling (Young Vic), The Bacchae, Mary Barton, Electra,Mayhem (Manchester Royal Exchange), Dancing at Lughnasa (Birmingham Rep), Romeo and Juliet, The Antipodes, Hamlet (Shakespeare's Globe), Comfort Me With Apples (Hampstead Theatre/Tour), Assassins (Sheffield Crucible), Seasons Greetings, Popcorn (Liverpool Playhouse), The Laramie Project (West End), A Passage to India, The Magic Toyshop, Jane Eyre (Shared Experience), Maid Marian and her Merry Men (Bristol Old Vic), What I Did In The Holidays, The Plough And The Stars, Hunchback Of Notre Dame, Dangerous Corner, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (New Vic, Stoke).

Television includes: BelgraviaCasualtyMy Country: A Work in ProgressGrantchester, Dark Angel, Prisoner's Wives, Call the Midwife, Land Girls, Sirens, South Riding, Silent Witness, Poppy Shakespeare, Bad Mother’s Handbook, Waterloo Road, No Angels, Murphy’s Law, Fat Friends, Outlaws.

Film includes: Broken and The Libertine.


Mel Pennant

Mel Pennant is a playwright, screenwriter and novelist.

In 2013, she won the Brockley Jack Write Now 4 award with her play “No Rhyme”.

In 2017, Mel was shortlisted for the Alfred Fagan Award for her play “A Black Fella Walks into a Bar”.

Mel was recently commissioned by the Belgrade Coventry Theatre and Tamasha to collaborate on a project which will be available for Coventry’s City of Culture in 2021.

Mel has been involved with the Tamasha Theatre Company writing for the Barbican Box and has written a short play called “Smile” in collaboration with the National Archives. Smile was shown at Rich Mix and was turned into a radio play.

In 2018/2019, Mel was awarded a place on the Hachette/ Tamasha pilot scheme for aspiring playwrights/ novelists and is currently developing her first novel, “The Corpse on Bute Street”.

Anastasia Osei-Kuffour

Anastasia Osei-Kuffour is a writer and director, trained through the Young Vic Directors Programme. She is currently Associate Director at Theatre 503, has just completed two years as Trainee Artistic Director at tiata fahodzi as part of the Artistic Director Leadership Programme and is Artistic Director of Wrested Veil theatre company.

Direction includes: Typical (Pleasance Courtyard Edinburgh Fringe & Soho Theatre); Cuttin' It (Royal Court, UK schools tour); Footprints on the Moon (Finborough Theatre); An Adventure (an excerpt, Bush Theatre ); Cell (Young Vic); Here Comes the Bride (Black Lives, Black Words at Bush Theatre); All the Ways to Say Goodbye (Young Vic); Hosea’s Girl (Talawa Studio Firsts); Dishonour, You Know That I’ll Be Back & Universally Speaking (Theatre 503); Pushers (Etcetera).

Associate and Assistant Director credits include: good dog (Spring 2019 National Tour); mixed brain (Roundabout, Summer Hall Edinburgh); Macbeth & Romeo and Juliet (National Theatre Dorfman, Stratford Circus, UK schools tour); Cuttin’ It — Young Vic’s Jerwood Assistant Director Programme, supported by the Jerwood Charitable Foundation (Young Vic, Royal Court, Birmingham REP, Sheffield Theatres and The Yard); Flowering Cherry, Alpha Beta & Andy Capp (Finborough); Three Generations of Women (Greenwich); Plaques and Tangles (Royal Court); Idomeneus (Gate); Henry the Fifth (Unicorn); and — as Boris Karloff Trainee Assistant Director — A Doll’s House (Young Vic).

Helen Coyston

Recent credits include: Homing Birds (Kali Theatre); Puss in Boots (The Theatre Chipping Norton); Operation Mincemeat (New Diorama Theatre); Everything I see Swallow (The Lowry/Summerhall); The Art of Gaman (Theatre 503); The Wizard of Oz (Taunton Brewhouse); Feed (The Lowry/Pleasance) Sex with Robots and Other Devices (King’s Head Theatre); Alice in WonderlandStepping OutA (Scarborough) Christmas CarolThe 39 StepsBuild A RocketGoth Weekend (Stephen Joseph Theatre);Our Mutual Friend (Hull Truck); Antigone (UK tour); The Acedian Pirates (Theatre 503); My Mother Said I Never Should (St James Theatre); Made up Stories From my Unmade Bed (Lyric Hammersmith/Latitude Festival); Peter PanWatership DownThere is a War (Watford Palace Theatre); Bluebird (Edinburgh Fringe).

simi majekodunmi
lighting designer

Graduated from RADA with a specialist degree in Lighting Design.
Works in Theatre include, Lucid for New Public Company, Tiger under the skin for New Public Company, J'ouvert for Theatre 503, Driving Miss Daisy for York Theatre Royal, Baby Box at York Theatre Royal Studios,
Future works Invisible Harmony at Southbank centre, Foxes at Theatre503


sound designer and composer

xana is an Offie-nominated sound designer, live loop musician, sound artist, theatre maker and poet who has worked on critically-acclaimed theatre shows, films and performed in cities around the world. xana’s work focuses on archives and embodying our future narratives and memories through sci-fi, magical realism and blending genres orchestral noise/thick bass.

xana features on the award-winning track Afronaut on the Mercury prize-nominated album Driftglass by Seed Ensemble. xana is Associate Artist at Ovalhouse Theatre creating new show Swallowing Your Idols, co-organiser of Afrotech Fest and publishes the children's comic Afronaut Squad.

Theatre includes: Ivan and the Dogs, Fairview (Young Vic); Strange Fruit (Bush Theatre); GreyJust Another Day and Night (Ovalhouse); Nightclubbing (Tour); Pink Lemonade (Gate Theatre); Mapping Brent Festival, Blood Knot (Orange Tree Theatre); SEX SEX MEN MEN (Pecs Drag Kings/Yard Theatre); Noughts and Crosses (Pilot/Derby Theatre); Burgerz (Hackney Showroom); Obama and Me (Talawa); Black Holes (The Place); Hive City Legacy (Roundhouse); Half-breed (Soho Theatre), Primetime (Royal Court Theatre).

Dan Gosselin
Production Manager

Credits as Production Manager include: A Place for We (Upcoming - Park Theatre); An Unfinished Man (Upcoming - Yard Theatre); Gentlemen (Upcoming - Arcola Theatre); Cinderella: A Drag Panto (Trafalgar Studios); The Greatest Play in the History of the World… (Trafalgar Studios); Dirty Crusty (Yard Theatre); Disney in the West-End Summer Pop-up (Covent Garden); Queen of the Mist (Brockley Jack Studio and Charing Cross Theatre); Sh!tfaced Showtime (Underbelly Festival Southbank); Summer Rolls (Park Theatre and Bristol Old Vic); Festive Bike Ride (Omnibus Theatre); Salome (Theatre N16). Dan has also worked in the fringes as Festival Production Manager for both the Durham Drama Festival and Durham Festival of the Arts and as Deputy Head of Lighting for The Warren, part of Brighton Fringe Festival 2019.

dan is a director of eStage, a collective of theatre people that works across the theatre industry to understand people's problems and deliver uniquely tailored tools, production support, and digital services that make everyone’s lives easier, all whilst driving new standards in production.

dan graduated with a Masters degree in Engineering from Durham University in 2015.

Ami Gaskin
Stage Manager

Graduated from Canterbury Christ Church university with a degree in performing arts.

Recent credits as a stage manager include: The love of the nightingale (the MTA); Women, power and politics (ALRA north); Wuthering heights (Oxford Shakespeare company); The remains of the day (royal and derngate and out of joint); Dear Santa (norwell lapley productions ltd); There was an old lady who swallowed a fly (the peoples theatre company).

tiata fahodzi

tiata fahodzi champions stories that illuminate the mixed, multiple experience of what it is to be of African heritage in multicultural Britain today so that – in our contemporary, changing society – the African diasporic experience provides a lens for us all to see our lives. They are a company for today’s Britain and the Britain of tomorrow. Previous work includes the five-star production of good dog by Arinzé Kene, mixed brain by ITV Benidorm’s Nathan Bryon, bricks and pieces by award-winning Charlene James, i know all the secrets in my world by Natalie Ibu and the Olivier nominated production iya ile (the first wife) by Oladipo Agboluaje. Olivier-winning Bola Agbaje cites tiata fahodzi’s production of the gods are not to blame in 2005 as her inspiration to write.

Wrested Veil

wrested veil is a producing company unveiling stories with potency and flourish, founded in 2017 to produce Footprints On The Moon at the Finborough Theatre. It is led by writer, director and producer Anastasia Osei-Kuffour with a desire to reveal stories that explore truth and the human story behind real world issues, in the hope of sparking change.

Leeds Playhouse
associate producer

There has been a Playhouse in Leeds for almost 50 years; from 1970 to 1990 as Leeds Playhouse, then, with the opening of a new theatre on its current Quarry Hill site it became West Yorkshire Playhouse until reclaiming its original name in 2018.

Leeds Playhouse is one of the UK’s leading producing theatres; a cultural hub, a place where people gather to tell and share stories and to engage in world class theatre. It makes work which is pioneering and relevant, seeking out the best companies and artists to create inspirational theatre in the heart of Yorkshire. From large-scale spectacle to intimate performance we develop and make work for our stages, for found spaces, for touring, for schools and community centres. We create work to entertain and inspire. As dedicated collaborators, we work regularly with other organisations from across the UK, independent producers, and some of the most distinctive, original voices in theatre today. Through our Furnace programme, we develop work with established practitioners and find, nurture and support new voices that ought to be heard. We cultivate artists by providing creative space for writers, directors, companies and individual theatre makers to refine their practice at any stage of their career. Alongside our work for the stage we are dedicated to providing creative engagement opportunities that excite and stimulate. We build, run and sustain projects which reach out to everyone from refugee communities, to young people and students, to older communities and people with learning disabilities. At the Playhouse there is always a way to get involved.

Leeds Playhouse – Vital Theatre
Artistic Director: James Brining
Executive Director: Robin Hawkes
Chairman of the Board: Sir Rodney Brooke CBE
Find us on Facebook: Leeds Playhouse
Follow us on Twitter: @LeedsPlayhouse
Follow us on Instagram: @LeedsPlayhouse

Leeds Theatre Trust Limited Charity Number 255460
VAT No. 545 4890 17 Company No. 926862, England Wales
Registered address Playhouse Square, Quarry Hill, Leeds, LS2 7UP

Soho Theatre
associate producer

Soho Theatre is London’s most vibrant theatre for new theatre, comedy and cabaret. They are a charity and social enterprise, driven by a passion for the work they produce, the artists they work with and the audiences they attract. Soho Theatre’s home is in the heart of the West End - three performance spaces, a busy bar, and a fast-changing festival programme with up to six shows a night. Firmly established on the London cultural scene, they’re now expanding into an additional 1,000 seat venue in Walthamstow, touring across the UK, India and Australia, and creating digital content.

Tara Finney Productions
associate producer

Tara Finney Productions (TFP) is an award-winning, independent theatre production company, founded in 2013 to produce Land of Our Fathers which was Time Out’s Fringe Show of the Year. The production subsequently transferred to Trafalgar Studios in 2014 and toured England & Wales for 14 weeks in 2015/16 before returning to London's hottest pop-up theatre, Found111. The production was also filmed by Riverside Studios and released on BBC Arts Online.

Recently, TFP's 20th anniversary production of Enda Walsh's Disco Pigs starring Evanna Lynch transferred to the Irish Repertory Theatre, New York, garnering a Critics' Pick from the New York Times. In spring 2019, TFP's co-production with tiata fahodzi of good dog by Olivier Award-nominated writer Arinze Kene completed its second tour of the UK and Build a Rocket was a Best Theatre Weekly Award winner at the Adelaide Fringe before touring the UK this autumn. This summer, TFP was associate producer on the world premiere of Oscar nominated writer Anthony McCarten's (Bohemian Rhapsody, Darkest Hour, The Theory of Everything) new play The Pope at Royal & Derngate, Northampton, starring Anton Lesser (Game of Thrones, The Crown, Wolf Hall).

Theatre credits include: Build a Rocket (UK Tour, Adelaide Fringe, Edinburgh Fringe, Latitude Festival), The Pope (Royal & Derngate), good dog (UK Tour), The Greatest Play in the History of the World… (Traverse Theatre/Royal Exchange Theatre), Disco Pigs (Irish Repertory Theatre, New York / Trafalgar Studios), Burkas and Bacon Butties (VAULT Festival), Ishq (Sadler’s Wells - as associate for Serendip Productions), All Our Children (Jermyn Street Theatre), MUTED (Bunker Theatre - for Interval Productions), The Acedian Pirates (Theatre503), And Then Come The Nightjars (National Tour - as associate for Theatre503 & Bristol Old Vic), Land of Our Fathers (Found111/National Tour/Trafalgar Studios/Theatre503), WINK (Theatre503).

TFP’s productions have been nominated for in excess of twenty-five awards including Off West End Awards, UK Theatre Awards, the Susan Smith Blackburn Award and the Chita Rivera Awards, New York.

Support us

Everything we do best, we do together. 
There are many ways to join us.

Support us

Everything we do best, we do together. There are many ways to join us.