Explosive play explores social media pressures on teenagers

Return to Rep for acclaimed production. 

Teenagers and social media collide with perilous consequences in Girls Like That, a play written with, and to be performed by, young people at Birmingham Repertory Theatre this week. Award-winning playwright Evan Placey’s original play addresses very current and alarming issues facing today’s teenagers.

Telling the story of Scarlett, a young girl whose naked photograph is sent around school, the play tackles issues including body image, relationships and bullying and looks at the pressures facing young teenage women today.

Girls Like That premiered at the Rep last year and returns from May 1st-3rd by popular demand as director Daniel Tyler explains:“Girls Like That is a powerful play that’s very relevant to the lives of teenagers and the influence of social media in their lives.  When we premiered the play last year we had an overwhelming response – teachers wanted to see the play tour to schools to prompt discussion amongst their students and parents talked about how the play had opened up some very important discussions in the car on the way home from the theatre.  For many Mums it opened their eyes and helped them understand the pressures their teenage daughters face daily.”


Writer Evan Placey adds: “The play not only explores the fallout when a naked photo is circulated of a teenage girl named Scarlett but also her past and that of her group of classmates as we encounter the girls at five years old, eight, 11, and 12, piecing together the messages that have been built up in the heads of these young women since they were children and their resulting (lack of) self-esteem. It’s about feminism and empowering young women. It’s about the conversations we’re not having with young people.”

Canadian-born Evan involved members of Birmingham Rep’s youth theatre in the writing process. The Young Re took part in workshops and rehearsals with Evan and director Daniel Tyler to explore the topics raised in the play and the finished piece is a genuine reflection of their interests, lives and characters. Evan was invited along with a group of young people to perform an extract of the play in Parliament for the launch of a new children’s mental health campaign and later this year The Young Rep have been invited to present part of the play  in Warsaw at the ASSITEJ World Congress of Youth Theatre.

Girls Like That will be performed by 14-18 year old members of The Young Rep on Thursday 1st– Saturday 3rd May. Tickets: 0121 236 4455 or Birmingham-rep.co.uk