Fury Theatre: 'Body Or Soul' At Durham Fringe Festival

A piece of provocative, evocative theatre asking: What would you do?
Mag North
July 8, 2024

Lincoln's Fury Theatre bring their hard-hitting BODY OR SOUL to City Theatre Durham as part of Durham Fringe Festival on Thursday 25 and Friday 26 July 2024.

The play asks audiences whether they would rather sell their body or their soul, explored through a Sliding Doors style story showing both choices.

Jessie is an ambitious and driven young PR graduate. She dreams of working for a charity or NGO - doing something meaningful with her time and making a difference. But the job market is hard, and when she gets an interview with online clothing retailer “Gapu”, she faces a dilemma. She’s a budding musician - does she prioritise that, or does she take the job that offers her financial security, even if the company has dubious morals and ethics?

Told through two parallel stories, with two “Jessies”, we see what happens when she takes the job, and when she doesn’t. In the world where she rejects capitalism, she soon faces the challenge of how to earn a living and turns to online cam sex work. At first it feels empowering - easy, even - she uses her PR skills to market herself and soon she’s making enough money to fund her creative ambitions alongside.

But in both worlds, Jessie's choice affects her relationships, her sense of self and the way she is perceived by the outside world. Which is “better”? Is any choice truly 100% “right”, or are we all just doing the best we can with the information we have at the time?

Body Or Soul at Durham Fringe Festival advert

Writer and Producer Laura Turner explains: “With Body or Soul, we wanted to create a play that would challenge audiences to look beyond the stereotypes around online sex work, and the prevailing judgement that still exists around women who choose to monetise their bodies. We aren’t looking to glamorise this choice - even for women who do feel empowered in this area and develop lucrative careers out of it, there is always a dark side. But equally, there is a very dark side to corporate careers in capitalist industries that we don’t discuss as often, and that’s what we want to explore.”

Co-writer and Director Stephen Gillard adds: “There’s still an attitude of asking a woman who works in the sex industry (in whatever role) - what went wrong? Whereas we happily accept those who go off and work in the city, turning a blind eye potentially on a daily basis to the goings on and PR cover ups of big companies who make huge profits out of child labour and modern slavery. We want to ask why this is, shed some light on the reality of both industries, and hope to start more conversations around what exploitation is beyond the tropes, assumptions and judgements that get made.”

Fury Theatre's piece of provocative, evocative theatre asks: what would you do?

Fury Theatre is a Midlands-based theatre company focused on exploring “female stories told with fire”.


Body or Soul - a new play by Laura Turner and Stephen Gillard

Presented by: Fury Theatre in association with The Asylum Players and Chronic Insanity Theatre

Venue: City Theatre, Fowler’s Yard, Back Silver Street, Durham, DH1 3HN

Dates: Thursday 25 and Friday 26 July 2024

Start Time: 8.30pm

Running Time: 70 mins

Tickets: £9 available HERE

Guidance: 16+ (strong language and sexual content)