“Founded over twenty years ago the award winning company, Open Clasp, brings another revealing, intense, stark insight to injustice”
The Reviews Hub 

“Unflinching drama about society’s failings”
The Stage

A probation office, a prison cell, a homeless shelter… Sugar is set in an abstract world where we meet three women all ‘doing time’ in very different ways, caught in a waiting space of continuous floors and revolving doors. Three survivors. Three voices seldom heard.   

Meet Annie, Julie and Tracey as we circle around their stories in an unflinching trilogy which honours the hard realities of lives lived in and around the criminal justice system.   

Presented by Open Clasp Theatre Company, Sugar is an intimate piece of theatre made for screen devised with women who are homeless, on probation or in prison.    

In partnership with Meerkat Films, in association with Live Theatre and supported by The Space  

Devised with women in HMP Low Newton, Women’s Direct Access Centre and women on probation attending a Women’s Hub at West End Women & Girls Centre. The three groups who collaborated on the creation of Sugar, discussed common shared experiences; childhood sexual abuse, domestic violence, drug and alcohol abuse, homelessness, along with a lack of provision to support women with complex needs.  These stories are three and at the same time one.

Sugar is now available to stream on BBC iPayer

Available to stream on iPlayer now

Episode 1

Paddy calls Annie over in a pub. He makes her laugh. She falls, in love and into trouble.
Starring Taja Luegaezor Christian

Stream Episode 1 on iPlayer

Available to stream on iPlayer now

Episode 2

It is Julie’s last night in prison. Determined and driven, Julie makes a promise to herself: this will be her last time.
Starring Paislie Reid

Stream Episode 2 on iPlayer

Available to stream on iPlayer now

Episode 3

Tracy is on the way to the hospital. Her eye is bleeding and she has shooting pains up and down her arms. But first, she has a story to tell.
Starring Zoe Lambert and Christina Berriman Dawson

Stream Episode 3 on iPlayer
Stream all episodes now on iPlayer

This is an important and urgent piece of theatre, a state of the nation, and it asks audiences to step into the shoes of women and to see the world through their eyes.

The pandemic has exposed the vast inequalities that were prevalent nationally. Communities who were vulnerable before and are even more vulnerable now with systematic inequality, racism, financial insecurity, domestic abuse rising rapidly, more women and young women reporting mental health problems and a rise in children living in and around the social care system. Sugar was created before the Covid-19 pandemic to honour the women who live with the realities of the system. Domestic abuse, childhood sexual abuse and childhood trauma feature heavily in each of the characters. It asks audiences to, now more than ever, empathise, to ask questions and it encourages change to the society that allows these women no safe place to live. We ask you to raise your voice with us and make change a reality.  

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Credits

Annie
Taja Luegaezor Christian

Read Taja’s Bio

Julie
Paislie Reid

Read Paislie’s Bio

Tracy
Zoe Lambert

Read Tracy’s Bio

Rita
Christina Berriman Dawson

Read Rita’s Bio
View Sugar’s Creative Team
Children
View Research and Development Partners
Sugar’s Original Partners

With thanks to

Open Clasp Board of Trustees and Patrons 

West End Women & Girls Centre
with special thanks to Huffty McHugh

Women’s Direct Access Centre
with special thanks to Tricia Duffy and Carol Bullard

Changing Lives

HMP Low Newton

Arts Council England

Morag McIntosh

Jessica Johnson

Kate Lewis

Kathyrn Beaumont

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Live Theatre

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