Young, vulnerable and in care Toyah tries to protect herself with her spitfire tongue, but her world is rapidly crumbling; Ally is ‘the golden girl’ but behind the perfect façade lies a mess of lies, confusion, sex and loss; Jay meanwhile has runaway from home and finally finding the care he craves in the arms of a stranger – but what price will he have to pay?
Bravely tackling the difficult and complex realities surrounding the issue of child sexual exploitation Crystal Kisses is a new play produced by Contact in partnership with Barnardo’s, the Protect Team, Brook, Manchester City Council and NHS Fresh. A bold new collaboration between the creative and social care sectors Crystal Kisses mixes drama, movement and music to explore the subject with sensitivity, empathy and insight.
Writer Sabrina Mahfouz says ‘This play is a vital piece of work that comes from the haunting stories of real young people. Hopefully we have done justice to those stories by sensitively dramatizing a much ignored issue. We hope raising awareness of the problem of child sexual exploitation will be one step towards creating a solution.’
Contact’s artistic director Baba Israel says "Crystal Kisses is a hard hitting show that raises awareness of an issue that is vital to the well being of young people. Contact is proud to be involved in a show that is powerful not only in its physicality and poetry but also in its in depth research and collaboration across cultures.’
Children’s Services Manager for Barnardo’s in Manchester Kim Harwood says ‘We are really excited about the opportunity to contribute to this production through our work with the multi-agency Protect team. Crystal Kisses is an innovative and hard-hitting piece of drama that we hope will get children and young people talking about the issues around child sexual exploitation.’
Written by Avaes Mohammad and Sabrina Mahfouz and directed by Benji Reid, Tachia Newall, Mandip Gill, Ste Myott, Yusra Warsama and Zariah Bailey.
Crystal Kisses returns to Contact from 6 - 7 and 13 - 15 October.