Notes to Future Self


Scene from Notes To Future Self“Judy’s my mom. It’s an understatement to say she’s a bit of a hippy. I mean who else but a New Ager calls their baby ‘Philosophy Rainbow’? I try to go by ‘Sophie’.”

Sophie and Calliope have never been to school. Their mum ran away from home when she was seventeen to join the New Age movement and the girls have been raised in Goa, San Francisco and Morroco at a series of ashrams, communes and impromptu raves.

Then one day Sophie gets ill and the family has to return to Birmingham. Sophie and Calliope are introduced to a strange new world where meditation and tree-hugging are replaced with Maths homework and television. They’re also introduced to Daphne: the grandmother that the girls have never met. And it’s against this bewildering new backdrop – the normality she’s always longed for – that Sophie must come to terms with her own mortality.

Caldwell… is one of those few playwrights who uses sentiment neither out of intellectual weakness nor emotional cowardice but as a glowing affirmation. These 75 minutes are about three women, each of whom is negotiating a new existence of her own, and at the centre a girl facing the end of life almost before she understands what it is […] a multi-levelled awareness of what life and death may mean to each of us
★★★★☆ Financial Times (more)

[A] brave, beautiful and quite extraordinary play
The Stage

Cast & Creative

  • Philosophy Rainbow (Sophie): Imogen Doel
  • Daphne: Jane Lowe
  • Judy: Amanda Ryan
  • Calliope: Jayne Wisener
  • Director: Rachel Kavanaugh
  • Designer: Colin Richmond
  • Lighting Designer: Simon Bond
  • Composer: Catherine James
  • Sound Designer: Dan Hoole
  • Associate Director: Robert Shaw Cameron
  • Casting Director: Alison Solomon
  • Dramaturg: Caroline Jester

Notes To Future Self by Lucy Caldwell premiered March 2011 at Birmingham Repertory Theatre Company.

BBC Radio 4 Afternoon Drama“Notes to Future Self” on Radio 4

Lucy Caldwell’s play “Notes to Future Self”, which premiered last year at Birmingham Repertory Theatre Company was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 as the Afternoon Play at 2.15 on Tuesday 30th October. Lucy herself abridged and adapted the play, and it was recorded in Belfast with the original cast and is produced and directed by Heather Larmour.

The play is no longer available on the BBC iPlayer catch-up service but details of the programme can be found here.