An independent theatre festival in Birmingham

*Originally posted in Portuguese here

With so many activities during these beautiful Summer days in Birmingham, I was not thinking about going to any of the Birmingham Fest plays – an indepedent theatre festival, that ends on 28th July.

I changed my mind when we were invited to Parklife, presented by Inamoment group. Interestingly, it was at the Old Joint Stock theatre, one of my favourite pubs in Birmingham!

Foto: Melissa Becker

The play

At lunchtime, four people take seats by Pigeon Park, where St Phillips Cathedral is located, in the city centre – and where a Big Issue seller works.

Foto: Melissa Becker

Parklife is a profound play. Each character reflects about their problems, while the sun shines or is hidden by the clouds. Locked down by their jobs’ routine (waitress, Sainsbury’s checkout operator, call centre operator for the council, banker), each one copes in their own way with the daily struggles. Meanwhile, the Big Issue seller, who is used to observe people on the park, connects the parallel stories.

Foto: Melissa Becker

It’s possible to identify ourserves with all five characteres in different moments of the play. Surely that’s the same type of stories in the mind of those who seek a few minutes of tranquility by the St Phillips Cathedral lawn during lunchtime.

Foto: Melissa Becker

The theatre and the pub

The venue is a performing room, due to its small size – which is surprising, since the pub’s building as a whole is quite imposing. That’s why the Old Stock Joint is one of my favourite pubs in Birmingham.

Also, I love its interior. It has a good selection of beers and wines. On the menu, pies are the house specialty.

The photos on this post are from 2010.

Foto: Melissa Becker Foto: Melissa Becker

Foto: Melissa Becker
Fotos: Melissa Becker (2010)

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