Forgiveness and revenge explored in Colin Bateman stage play

A scene from Bag for Life, starring Julie Addy

KAREN is in her mid-30s, married with a young child. She has just bumped into a man in Tescos – the man who shot her brother in the face.

What does she do? What would you do?

As Colin Bateman's new feature film The Journey, about Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness, creates a stir following its world premiere at the Venice film festival, the writer's stage play, Bag for Life, is preparing to tour.

The Playhouse Derry commission, starring The Fall's Julie Addy, asks whether forgiveness overcome the want for revenge in 21st century Northern Ireland.

"It's an important piece," says director Kieran Griffiths.

"The discussion elicited of forgiveness and identity and the effect of a chemically influenced generation is extremely topical and current in our society today.

"Colin asks what are we to make of the men of violence whose time has been and gone, and who have settled into both civil and civilian life?"

The play employs the latest VJ Software which allows the mixing of digital video and effects in a real-time, improvisational environment.

:: Bag for Life by Colin Bateman plays the SERC theatre, Bangor from November 3 to 5 ( and the Lyric theatre, Belfast from November 8 to 13 (

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