Ella Road’s debut play, The Phlebotomist, was an absolute belter, a gripping story of selection and deception. This new story sounds like a winner too: it follows two young women, both talented athletes, who join the same club and develop a close friendship, but then find themselves in competition with each other. This play explores the price of success and the way that athletics puts female bodies and strength under the microscope, and should demonstrate that while the pandemic has slowed her progress, Road is a considerable talent.
When Ann joins Sophie’s running club she’s thrown into a world of regimented training and pure focus. The two girls couldn’t be more different, but soon their shared passion makes them inseparable – dreaming in lanes and lap-times, waking up picturing Olympic medals, each day stronger and faster… But set head to head in the run up to the World Championships, they find themselves and their friendship put to the ultimate test. As their relationships, their bodies, and their very identities are pulled into public scrutiny, does being exceptional come at too high a price? A gripping exploration of the underside of women’s athletics, Fair Play is the new work from Ella Road (The Phlebotomist) – “the most promising young playwright in Britain” (The Telegraph).