Red Ladder Theatre Company: Connected during COVID

Whilst theatres are shut, Red Ladder is bringing ‘Connected’ into your homes. It’s a new, witty audio drama, written by Leeds’ Chris O’Connor and Paul Fox, and is being released in a weekly podcast in short episodes. 

Connected stars Leeds Rhinos’ captain Stevie Ward alongside Paul Fox. It’s been produced in partnership with Mantality, a multifaceted platform for promoting and supporting men’s mental health, founded in 2016 by Stevie Ward.

Paul Fox’s roles for Red Ladder include Promised LandRabbitskinPlaying The Joker and The Thing About Psychopaths. He and Stevie play Paul and Danny, two Leeds lads who meet in the pub every Wednesday for a pint after work. But 2020 is different.

Listeners will be taken from the pair’s carefree, banter and beer days to those of the Coronavirus and its impact on two working class lads from Yorkshire as they are surrounded by the world they know falling apart.

Connected is directed by Red Ladder’s Artistic director Rod Dixon who has now gone on furlough. It features sound by Dom Smith and music composed by Claire-Marie Seddon.

Rod Dixon:

“In response to the Coronavirus and with our national tour of Smile Club brought to a close, Red Ladder has commissioned local playwright Chris O’Connor and actor Paul Fox to write a series of short podcast plays. Connected is being recorded by our creative teams in the isolation of their own homes. In each episode of Connected we see how the lockdown and social distancing affect two characters – Paul and Danny. Chris O’Connor and Paul Fox write authentic dialogue which, through witty pub banter, reveals a funny and yet poignant view of the coronavirus pandemic.”

Chris O’Connor

“‘Having written for Red Ladder, as well as co-hosted the Mantality podcast, it is brilliant to bring the two together on something creative. Our industries have been hit hard by the current pandemic and when we began to lose work, we thought about creating a series of audio plays which would take us week by week through these unusual times. We have an idea of the ending for Connected, but how we get there depends on what happens in the next few months.”

Connected is released as a weekly podcast and can be listened to via Red Ladder and Mantality’s websites and social media channels. Please visit for more information.

Photograph provided by Amanda Trickett PR.

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