My Generation, a new play by Alice Nutter (Chumbawamba) runs at The West Yorkshire Playhouse from 5-26 October 2013. Music for the play has been written by Harry Hamer (Chumbawamba), who performs with a live three-piece band on stage.

Cath believes the personal is political. Mick agrees, but he’s got much more important things to do with his time than the washing up. The kids, Ben and Emma are less concerned about the class war than they are about having to wear second hand jumpers to school.

Set in Leeds, My Generation is the story of a family and a city through 40 years of alternative culture. From the fear, tension and radical feminism of Leeds during the Yorkshire Ripper, the disillusionment of the Miners’ Strike, the drug-fuelled hedonism of the 90s and finally the instability and possibilities created by today’s economic crisis.

Heartbreak, betrayal and coming out scrapping when all you’ve got left is pride, My Generation follows people who tried to live differently..

Written by award-winning TV writer Alice Nutter, founder member of Chumbawamba, this witty new play is played out to an explosive mash-up of the best pop from four decades

My Generation: The Exhibition

Running alongside this new play is an exhibition of photographs, curated by East Street Arts, at West Yorkshire Playhouse and The Reliance.

School friends Andrew Bannerman-Bayles and Andrew Medcalf moved from Darlington to Leeds in 1984. Here they began to document the thriving punk and local squat scene through photographs, capturing a valuable period in the city’s social history.

The images span from 1984-1991, an era when punk, politics, communal living and outdoor raves were a fixture in the areas of Chapeltown, Headingley, Woodhouse and Meanwood.

This is the first time they have been displayed in public.

Nutter and Hamer discuss the creative and rehearsal processes in a short promotional, behind-the-scenes video:
 

 

Nutter discusses the work on the Northern Soul web site. The play is reviewed in The Post, on the We are Plan C blog and elsewhere.