Sunday, July 01, 2007

When to Run

Sophie Woolley’s one person play, When to Run, tells the compelling story of four women runners and a man who looks a bit like Tony Soprano. Woolley flits between four different voices in the show: a neurotic professional, an urban teenage athlete, a secretly miserable lifestyle guru and a dog walker who hates exercise. Their lives collide as they pound the pavements of London - with fatal consequences.
The following is an excerpt from the play.

It’s 7.30am. Friday is run to work day. 5k at race pace. And you’re stretching and checking your laptop but you can’t make sense of the tracking device information. He can’t be in that many different places in a week. It must be a con. He’s in the shower now. He’s a good man. It’s a wonderful shower. Nothing to worry about. He’s an account manager.

You put your suit in your bag and you bang bye bye on the wonderful shower.
You’re running past new tower blocks sprouting in the sunshine – growing in front of your very eyes like real estate time lapse footage. The cranes are multiplying to lift people like you up, up and away from the eternal morass of sickness and poverty and crime and obesity. All the good people are starting afresh, carving somewhere nice out of the ruins. Widening the gap. You feel nuclear and renewable all at once. Twenty three minutes and 53 seconds. 5K is nothing to women like you.
Sophie Woolley
You can catch When to Run at Purcell Room, South Bank
Centre on 10 & 11 July
and at Regents Park Open Air Studio Theatre on 15 August. Watch clips at

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