Published: Tue 15 Jun 21

Ifeyinwa Frederick’s Sessions is going on tour

Today Paines Plough and Soho Theatre have announced full tour dates for Ifeyinwa Frederick’s SESSIONS, directed by Philip Morris. Exploring the complexities of mental health in young men, masculinity, depression and therapy, SESSIONS will tour the UK from 28 September, starting  in Selby and ending it’s run at Soho Theatre from 8 November to 5 December with a Press Night on 11 November. Tickets for SESSIONS at Soho Theatre are now on sale. 

Ifeyinwa’s debut play THE HOES was shortlisted for the Verity Bargate Award in 2018. Alongside her theatre work, Ifeyinwa is a restaurateur, co-founding Chuku’s – the world’s first Nigerian tapas restaurant – and was included on Forbes’ list of 100 Female Founders in Europe. Philip Morris was a Trainee Director at The Royal Court and is the founder and Artistic Director of Trybe House Theatre, a newly formed company which seeks to actively build resilience and self-wellbeing, primarily with young black men aged 16 – 25, using theatre as a supportive outlet. 

Raw, funny, bittersweet, SESSIONS by Ifeyinwa Frederick interrogates the challenge of opening up and accepting our own vulnerabilities.   

“30 just matters, init. Like there’s no doubt you’re a proper adult then. Like 25 to 29 is just training but 30, it’s real.”

Tunde’s 30th birthday is fast approaching. So, he’s just started therapy because he hasn’t been able to get to the gym for weeks and a recent one night stand ended in tears – his.

Tour locations include: Selby Town Hall; Arts Centre Washington; The Maltings, Berwick; Rosehill Theatre, Whitehaven; Middlesbrough Town Hall; Cast, Doncaster; Mill Arts, Banbury; The Hat Factory, Luton; The Edge, Manchester; Arts Depot, London; The Old Market, Brighton; Marine Theatre, Lyme Regis; Ventnor Exchange; The Spring Arts Centre, Havant; The Garage, Norwich; Key Theatre, Peterborough; Norden Farm; Derby Theatre; Unity Theatre, Liverpool; South Hill Park; Pound Arts, Corsham; Trestle Arts Base; Yvonne Arnaud, Guildford.

In 2019 Paines Plough co-commissioned a new play by Ifeyinwa Frederick, one of the 2019 Soho Six, in a yearlong attachment programme for artists run by Soho Theatre.  As part of their 2021 season Paines Plough, together with Soho Theatre, present the result. The production debuts in September 2021 with a national tour before playing at Soho Theatre in November 2021. This will be the third production in a multi-year partnership with the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.

Paines Plough will be partnering with Trybe House Theatre, a newly formed company which seeks to actively build resilience and self well-being, particularly with young black men aged 16-25, using theatre as a supportive outlet. Together, they will deliver a programme of theatre workshops to national audiences alongside the SESSIONS tour.

Ifeyinwa is a fervent believer in the power of storytelling and human connection, which fuels her work as a writer and entrepreneur. In need of a creative outlet outside of her business, she began writing and joined Soho Theatre Writers’ Lab. Supported by the programme, she wrote her debut play THE HOES which received a full production at Hampstead Theatre in 2018. The play was shortlisted for the Tony Craze Award and Character 7 Award and longlisted for the Verity Bargate Award. Writing alongside her full-time job as co-founder of Chuku’s – the world’s first Nigerian tapas restaurant – she’s a Young British Foodie award winner and has been featured in Forbes’ list of 100 Female Founders in Europe. 

Philip Morris has been a Trainee Director at the Royal Court. He was previously Senior Youth Theatre Director at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre (The REP). After graduating from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Philip began work as an intern at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre and the Birmingham Hippodrome. Approximately halfway through his 6-month internship he was asked to deliver a pitch for Mind Charity for a pilot project named Up MY Street working closely with vulnerable young black men on behalf of The REP. He was successful in the pitch which then led to him creating Lightpost Theatre Company. He has since gone on to direct work for the National Theatre, Company Three, the Young Vic and is the now Artistic Director of his own theatre company Trybe House Theatre.