Hungry Nation

The Albany Theatre, Coventry, April 2022

A co-created performance with volunteers and members of Foleshill Social Supermarket with lived experience of food poverty.

Faiza, Roxie, Simon, Nick, Tony, Bradley, Tom and Roy will take to a stage with a new piece of theatre in their home town of Coventry as part of its City of Culture year – to express what it feels like not knowing where your next meal will come from.

Join us on an epic journey to unpick why people are going hungry in one of the richest countries in the world.

CAST Roy, Faiza, Nick, Tony, Simon, Tom, Bradley, Roxie, Denise, Hema

Director Jo Newman

Writer Caroline Horton

Movement Director Naomi Said

Musical Director Tom Johnson

Associate Director Angela Mhlanga

Production Photos Joe Bailey

Producers Tom Bevan and Sarah Blowers

Produced by Strike a Light and Coventry City of Culture

“Brave and courageous”

audience response

“Absolutely blown away by this powerful performance. Thank you to the cast for sharing your stories”

audience response

“You moved and inspired me”

audience response

What can you do to help?

If you would like to help, please consider supporting Foleshill Community Supermarket. Their work is invaluable, offering a dignified shopping experience and feeding between 300-400 people a week.

You can also support the Right to Food Campaign, working to ensure that the right to food becomes enshrined in law and the government are held accountable for ensuring food security

How Hungry Nation came about

The Hungry Nation participants are from Coventry and they have all lived in food poverty and insecurity. 

They are women, men, mothers, fathers, uncles, aunts, sisters, brothers – ordinary people who found themselves in totally unexpected hardship.

Many of them they have never been given the chance to express themselves before. Over the last 6 months, they have worked with professional artists to create work and share their stories as well as their brilliant creativity. There is a real gift for writing in the group.

People became involved in the project through their association with Foleshill Community Centre: a social supermarket, a community centre and a space that holds a lifeline for many in the community. It is an amazing place, that literally saves lives by feeding people.

This has been a sensitive process for many, as sharing their story is triggering. The path to food poverty is a traumatic one, which no one chooses.

It is a journey that has created substantial mental health issues – but the participants have found that joining a creative, co-created process has really helped. When you’re hungry and you have to choose between heating your house or feeding your children, being creative is not a priority.

At the start of 2022, the group of 8 decided they wanted to work together and Co-create a performance with music, their own accounts of food poverty and a narrative storyline combining wider themes.

Hungry Nation is the result.