Plays and dramatic writing
by Maria Oshodi
When a young white female plumber allows her trainee male partner to work on a job at the flat of her second generation Nigerian school friend, what could possibly burst up …
Written in 1983 and performed as part of the 1984 Royal Court’s Young Writers Festival, directed by David Sulkin
The S Bend went on to be produced by The Cockpit Theatre in 1985 , directed by Claire Grove, and was later published by Longmans in 1986 in ‘Festival Plays’.
Choices To Chocolate
Against the backdrop of London’s seeming, hedonistic, alternative fashion and clubbing world of the 1980’s, a group of young people struggle with what choices Thatcher’s Britain has to offer …
This play received a workshop production at Riverside Studios in 1987, directed by Kate Harwood
Blood Sweat and Fears
Ben dreams of being a Chef while working part-time at a gimmicky fast food joint to make ends meet. He also has a nightmare in the shape of his Sickle Cell Anemia that he is trying to conceal from the friends around him and especially his girlfriend, but the pressures of the work-place are growing and threatening a big wake up call for him…
This play was written with the support of an Arts Council of England commission and directed by David Sulkin and produced as a national tour by Harmony Theatre in 1988. It was then re-mounted in 1990 by Talawa Theatre, directed by Yvonne Brewster and produced again in 1994 at the Nia Cultural Centre in Manchester, directed by Brian Morgan.
It was published in 1989 by Methuen in Black Plays 2 and a recording of the 1990 production is available through the British library audio archive
Here Comes a Candle
Gina looks like a perfect Black Barbie doll, and makes designer dolls-houses for exclusive outlets but when she brings into her home a Victorian rag doll from the North as an au pair and a South American folk doll as a cleaner, play-time is over….
This play, commissioned by Inner City Theatre Company was directed by Paulette Randal and presented at Oval House Theater in 1989.
Commissioned by Warner Sisters for their Channel 4 She-Plays series, Mug recounts the intimidation and pressure to react violently within a group of girls, possibly influenced , or not, by the boys that surround them…
Televised in 1990, Mug received ‘Pick of the Day’ in the Times.
When three new recruits arrive at guide dog training camp, rather than finding Solis in their experience of a shared impairment , instead they find themselves in a dog eat dog world of the ruthless charity they are at the mercy of…
Commissioned by Graeae Theatre Company, Hound was directed by Ewan Marshall and toured nationally in 1992. It was published in Graeae Plays 1 in 2002.
Maria was commissioned as writer by Braunarts for their multi media
Project called The Dark – A sonic physical journey into the pitch dark of a slaver ship, telling the story of Captain John Newton (Amazing Grace), Edward Rushton (founder of the first blind school in England, and Kunle (real West African crew member).
The Dark opened in 2004 at the Science museum’s Dana Gallery, before touring extensively throughout Britain – re-touring in 2007 as Dark Heritage in
Commemoration of the bicentenary of the abolition of slavery on British ships.
An adaptation by Maria Oshodi of the autobiography ‘And There Was Light’ by Jacques Lusseyran, the blind teenage leader of a resistance cell in occupied Paris during WWII. Directed by Eileen Dillon and produced by Extant and Turtle Key, the production toured nationally and internationally to France and Croatia in 2005.
A Putney Light Shines
A Heritage Lottery site-specific writing commission by Maria Oshodi produced at St Mary’s Church Putney in 2007 to commemorate the 360th anniversary of Oliver Cromwell’s Putney Debates of 1647.
In 2009 The Putney Society commissioned Maria Oshodi to write an adaptation of the 1909 novel ‘Buried Alive’ by Arnold Bennett, as an audio dramatic walk through the streets of Putney – It can be downloaded from the Wandsworth local authority website here.
Maria was one of four writers commissioned by Flexor and Sandiland in 2017 to create a collection of reflections on urban automated interactions. Starting as a Brighton Festival installation, The Hum has gone onto tour various UK cities and can be experienced via a mobile app.
More info on the Flexor and Sandiland website here
Maria Oshodi has contributed to the following publications:
- Theatre in the Dark: Shadow, Gloom and Blackout in Contemporary Theatre (Methuen Drama)
- The Punchdrunk Encyclopaedia: Edited by Josephine Machon
Reasons to be Graeae: A Work In Progress by Oberon Books
- Imperialism and Theatre: Essays on World Theatre, Drama and Performance
Published by J. Ellen Gainor Editor , featuring in essay by Mary Karen Dharl.
- Theme scripts; New Plays for the national Curriculum.
Published by John Murray ISBN 07195 48055 Series editors Alan Lambert June Mitchell
She also has been audio description consultant for the Royal National Theatre for the last ten years.
She was part of the Afro-Cuban inclusive band Besta Vista led by Neville Murray from 2001/2007