Hunger for Trade is an international event overseen by the Hamburg-based Schauspielhaus and with the Royal Exchange, Manchester, to raise awareness that the human need to eat is politically charged.
Playwright Simon Stephens chose four writers from the Royal Exchange shortlist, and mentored them through the process of researching and writing a short theatre piece on food:
In Brad Birch's Tender Bolus, the focus is on the relationship between gluttony, the consumer society and the globalism capitalism of the food market. The piece explores the price of greed and excess on unsustainable capitalism.
Alastair McDowell's This Land deals with the copy-writing of food and geo-crops, exploring whether food is an idea that can now be owned and policed. Can global corporations now claim ownership to the crops that form the food supply?
In Kellie Smith's Black Gold, she shows the roles of African cocoa farmers on the Ivory Coast and the West's relationship with cocoa, chocolate and the international cocoa trade.
Miriam Battye's Balance starts with the family dinner table and shows how emotional instability is played out through complicated, comforting or damaging relationships with food.
Their research has drawn on people from around Manchester from varying positions in the food industry, from the University of Manchester to representatives of the corporation Cargill, as well as food activists and restauranteurs.
There is also a series of dialogues and interventions staged at the Royal Exchange.
24 April - 3 May 2014