Last Saturday, I went to Earthquakes in London, a National Theatre/Headlong production here in Bath, UK. It was an epic play, essentially about the end of the world. The timeline stretched from the swinging sixties to some centuries into the future. The production looked at how we respond to information about the impacts of overpopulation, resource depletion and climate change.
Although its focus was broad – almost cosmic – at its heart was a very personal story about particular people, their relationships and choices. It posed uncomfortable questions about how we face up to corrupting influences, both subtle and obvious, to live out our personal responsibilities. And although all that might sound hard-going, the production was far from ‘worthy’. I think all of us left the theatre, challenged by a rather difficult question: Why can’t we all respond more decisively to difficult messages about our impact on a planet whose resources are dwindling?