Under the Radar is a dark comedy about gender, consent, power and violence, especially relevant in the #metoo era.
Lee, a quick-witted reporter, sets out to write a career-making article on an eccentric inventor, Captain Martin Christensen, and the maiden voyage of his private submarine. The two set off and, before long, the confined space of the vessel becomes a darkly comic microcosm for the conflicts between gender, tradition and modernity.
Awards, Nominations and Reviews
Debut run at Bread and Roses Theatre, 2019
Standing Ovation Award - Nomination 'for Jonathon Crewe’s macabre and comical exploration of gender creating an innovative and groundbreaking piece of theatre'
London Pub Theatres - Rachel Overd (14th November 2019)
‘Crewe’s macabre narrative skilfully interweaves witty dialogue and dark comical moments to address some serious issues relevant in the #MeToo era.’
‘a rollercoaster of unexpected twists and turns...a staggering, shocking, exciting and ground-breaking piece of theatre.’
‘tight talented production - unlike any other...This really is a must-see show! It will transcend and transform you, not just to the depths of the sea, but to the depths of the inner beast.’
Broadway World - Jonathan Marshall (14th November 2019)
‘It's certainly a timely and relevant work in the wake of the #MeToo campaign, and although unsettling, it's laced with a strong undercurrent of black humour.’
‘This is an intense and disquieting play that cleverly takes us in a series of unexpected directions.’
Theatre, Films and Art Reviews - Elaine Chapman (14th November 2019)
‘Emotionally fuelled and challenging to watch...a multi-layered and very complex play.’
‘it does exactly what good theatre should do and makes you question what you have just watched.’
Within Her Words - Ingrid Felix (18th November 2019)
‘What is intriguing about Under the Radar is that it is also a mirror image of our society'
'A complicated and interesting look at the double standards between men and women in modern society'
View from the Outside - Stephanie Ressort (14th November 2019)
‘‘Under the Radar’ doesn’t pull any punches, and has a lot to offer those who enjoy their comedy dark and their theatre provocative.’
Stagedoor - Ethan Taylor,
'A claustrophobic, thought-provoking, humorous and harrowing two-hander that doesn’t pull its punches when tackling gender equality and privilege.'
Papatango New Writing Prize - Reader Feedback
‘compelling, chaotic and macabre play... skilfully interweaving witty dialogue and black humour with a sophisticated treatment of themes’
Dr Paul Vlitos, Reader in Creative Writing, Subject Leader: English Literature, Film, Creative Writing, University of Surrey
In November 2019 I took a group of undergraduate students from the English Literature and the English Literature with Creative Writing students (a group of 15 students, from the first, second and third years) to watch Jon Crewe’s play Under the Radar at the Bread and Roses theatre in London.
It was a hugely successful event – the play itself was stimulating, entertaining and thought-provoking, in terms of the clever production decisions made, the strikingness of the writing and the issues raised, prompting a great deal of lively discussion both after the performance and in subsequent seminars. In module feedback Creative Writing students in particular mentioned the benefits (and the inspiring effect) of seeing a new play on a contemporary topic performed in this kind of setting, with the performance giving them a sense not only of how much can be achieved dramatically under such circumstances but a sense of how they too as writers, directors or performers might be able to stage their future work.
In short, it was an evening which was not only enjoyable for all but of real benefit to the students – and event of the kind which students who attended have repeatedly requested more of.
Dr Marcus Nicholls, Course Leader: Media and Communication at University of West London
I took my third year Media and Film students to see Under the Radar before organising a Q&A/seminar with the writer/director and lead actor as part of a module on theories of identity and difference. The students were extremely enthusiastic when discussing the play and we had a really productive two-hour discussion of the themes of gender, power, violence, privilege and related ideas. While I had planned a structured session, in fact the students brought so many of their own talking points and discussions from the viewing that I rarely had to intervene. Debates were lively and critically-engaged, and I received very positive feedback from the students who were especially pleased to be able to pose questions directly to the creators. I would highly recommend Under the Radar and the director & actor seminar to any courses/module with discussions of the writing or creative development process, or courses rooted in debates around gender, power, consent, violence, etc.
About Under the Radar
Back by popular demand after a sold-out run in 2019, Under the Radar is a dark comedy about gender, consent, power and violence.
Lee, a quick-witted reporter, sets out to write a career-making article on an eccentric inventor, Captain Martin Christensen, and the maiden voyage of his private submarine. The two set off and, before long, the confined space of the vessel becomes a darkly comic microcosm for the conflicts between gender, tradition and modernity. Under the radar these extremes play out, but only one of the passengers will make it back to shore.
Under the Radar looks to dissect unconscious bias and misogyny, especially relevant in the #MeToo era. Through a sharp, witty and macabre narrative lens, it examines our cultures and traditions and asks how connected they are to the foundations of prejudice.
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Eleanor Hill is an East 15 graduate and winner of the Mandy Monologue Award 2019.
Theatre credits include Obsolete Tomfoolery 2018 (Etcetera Theatre), The Bacchae 2018 (Corbett Theatre);
Film credits include With you 2018 (London Film Academy) and The Car 2019 (Short Film by Shirley Marshall).
Praise for Under the Radar
'Eleanor Hill particularly shines in the darker, comic elements of the piece, and is downright brilliant in the final scenes... Nicholas Anscombe...succeeds in bringing [Martin] to life without going down the lazy road of caricature...his is a performance that grows and develops deeper dimensions over the course of the play. The power of this two-hander sits squarely on the shoulders of these two actors, and they totally deliver.' View from outside
'Hill delivers a first-rate performance...[Anscombe] is able to balance light and shade. His comic timing is effective, but he uses his skills to flick like a switch, and we never know quite what he's going to say or do' Broadway World
Nicholas Anscombe is an actor, physical performer and puppeteer. He trained at Rose Bruford College and recently completed filming and puppeteering on the new Sky series, The Third Day, starring Jude Law.
He played The Baron in 80 Days: A Real World Adventure (Underbelly Festival Southbank 2019). He won Best Supporting Actor for Elevator Blues (Thinc Films) and was nominated for Best Supporting Actor with Memory Man (Encounter Films).
Other credits include:
The Creature - Requiem (BBC/Netflix – New Pictures), Colonel Von Braun - Revenge of Robert (Amazon Prime - North Bank Entertainment, Sherlock Holmes & The Hound of the Baskervilles (Open Book Theatre), Sleepyhead (Little Angel Theatre).
Puppetry credits include:
TwirlyWoos (CBeebies), Newzoids (ITV), Sing For Your Life (Winner of Origins & Pick of the Week Awards at The Vaults festival), Boris & Sergey's Vaudevillian Adventure (Flabbergast Theatre).
WRITER AND DIRECTOR
Dr Jonathon Crewe is a writer and director for film, theatre and radio, whose work predominantly investigates forms of representation and socio-cultural hierarchies. His PhD examined media and political elite’s marginalisation of the white working-class and his subsequent radio and theatre play, Toy Soldier, looked at class in the military. His debut award winning* feature film, face2face, deals with the creation of self-identity through social-media - a Frankenstein for the digital age. (*Best Director at World Distribution Awards, USA and Alternative Film Festival, Canada). His latest film 'Last night, locked in... is an homage to neo-noir fimed during the 20-21 Covid lockdowns and is released on Amazon.
Wan Yuan Teo is a suit in disguise. She is a career marketeer, currently heading up a few heritage brands in an established FMCG. She has been in the UK for 9 years, since her MBA at LBS.
Wan has always been fascinated by the creative, whether working on commercial ads or helping to found the radio station at her university. While her first theatre role was as a sheep in a remake of Ulysses in her youth, she has recently reignited her passion for the arts.
Wan combined her business acumen with her interest in the arts by producing her first theatre production, Under the Radar; followed by an award-winning* acting and producing role in 'Last Night Locked In... (*Best Supporting Actor - World Film Carnival, Singapore)