An interview with Anastasia Osei-Kuffour, Seeds director
1. How would you describe the show to someone who hasn’t seen it?
Seeds is a tense drama where two mothers fight for their sons, bargaining with each other to get what they desperately need and in the process bare their souls, leaving them both changed by the encounter.
2. How would you sum up the play in three words?
Tense, emotive, shattering.
3. What was it that initially drew you to the play?
Its subject matter drew me to the play. It explores racism and motherhood in a way that really resonates with me: placing racism in the context of families, how the ‘seeds’ of racism can grow in families, ‘take root’ and have horrifically dangerous consequences – a point that I feel is so important to highlight. It also considers how far a mother would go to protect their son. Having reached an age where I’m thinking about having children, I worry a lot about how safe the world is, whether I can keep my children safe when I bring them in this world, I think about what I would do to protect them.
4. Why do you think it’s important that we discuss knife crime from the perspective of mothers?
They are left dealing with the shattering aftermath for years and years after; they bring life into the world only to see it cut down. There’s a need to highlight these people so that, as a society, we can think more about how we support them to survive the deepest of tragedies.
5. What do you want audiences to take away from the production? What discussions do you want to inspire?
I want to inspire greater awareness of the ‘seeds’ of racism in families in the hope they can be rooted out before they cause disaster. I believe people can change and grow, people with racist views – if they would allow themselves to see it – can change and help to change others if they choose to take a stand. I want people to see the play as a warning that we all need to take xenophobia seriously and act to stamp it out. Discourse challenging racist and xenophobic rhetoric and events, like this play which allows people from diverse backgrounds to be in the same space to face these issues, will help and play a part in creating change.
Seeds plays at Live Theatre on Tues 3 & Wed 4 March 2020. Find out more and book tickets at https://www.live.org.uk/whats-on/seeds