Image Credit: Ali Wright
'Check-in/Check-out' is an authentic account of living with addiction. Devised and performed by people in recovery, it weaves together personal stories blurring the line between performance and confession.
From personal journeys of chaos come authentic stories of recovery.
'Check-in/Check-out' is devised by Outside Edge’s ensemble of professional actors in recovery. Plunging the audience into the heart of addiction, the production presents the performers’ personal narratives of recovery and positions these stories in context next to contributing social factors.
Co-facilitated by veteran West End performer Christopher Holt, ‘Check-in/Check-out’ follows the structure of Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous 12 steps of recovery and blurs the lines between performance and confession. Using Outside Edge’s unique brand of anarchic energy and outsider humour, our performers share the oppression and violence felt by substance misuse.
‘Check-in/Check-out’ is not a cautionary tale about addiction. It is an authentic account of what it feels like to live on the edge of society and on the edge between life and death.
Over six months the performers shared personal stories from their journeys to recovery and devised material related to the 12 Steps to Recovery. The resulting production explores the cyclical nature of recovery and relapse along with the superhuman feat of overcoming addiction.
Inter-splicing direct address, abstract movement and dialogue, 'Check-in/Check-out' presents an honest and raw account of substance misuse, addiction and recovery. In order to capture the experience of overcoming what appears to be an insurmountable personal challenge, we made the decision to end the piece, performed by an ensemble with no dance experience and visible physical restrictions, with a contemporary ballet. This expressionistic gesture created a sublime final moment of grace and palpable personal achievement.
★★★★ 'The beautiful thing about this show is its freedom and ability to let go. Check In/Check Out re-introduces the power of theatre to the audience and reminds us of its brilliant therapeutic properties. It is clear from the beginning that the members of this company have all worked incredibly hard to be in the place they are now, and their commitment to the show is rife throughout. This show is not about getting the lines perfectly every time, or about Oscar winning performances, but rather, giving those in recovery a platform to have their voices heard.' Within Her Words
‘My verdict? It was a unique experience, and one definitely worth having.’ Mind the Blog
‘These frank and honest testimonies serve to highlight the ways in which addiction can lead regular people down dark pathways.’ A Younger Theatre
'I can only commend the company for creating this space in an industry which so often turns its back on numerous groups in society – or on the Outside Edge.' Theatre Weekly
'The power of art as a means of therapy is clearly evident here as we watch the performers physically draw the damage they have done to their bodies to then wipe it all away; symbolic of their twelve-steps to recovery.' Spy in the Stalls
'The stories are intensely personal and interesting especially in their refusal to dictate or moralise. They feature the moments of humour and elation as well as those of despair, which makes the tone of the whole piece more human and kind' The Upcoming