Unknown at Greenside @ Infirmary Street is an extremely moving, yet inspirational and uplifting, story of a young woman living with brain injury after a plane crash. What makes this story extra special is that Hannah O’Dowd, who co-wrote this production and who also stars in it, is that young woman, and this is her own story.
After a light aircraft, in which 21 year old Hannah was travelling in Australia whilst on her study year abroad, crashed on a beach, Hannah was left in a coma with serious injuries which included a broken neck and broken pelvis.
The story cleverly uses the concept of her friends and family talking to Hannah whilst she is in the coma, and writing a journal, to tell the audience of their relationships to Hannah. Hannah herself then tells what life is like for her now, with the use of film to show her before the accident and then what recovery was like for her.
It also explores how Hannah’s accident affected those close to her, with her friends making statements like, “It feels selfish to be upset when it’s not about us”, and “I don’t know how to act”.
Original music written and performed by Leah Tess adds to the emotion of this story, which ultimately says so much about the power of friendship and support, and also accepting what you cannot change. As Hannah says, “This is my reality now”.
Proceeds from this production are being donated to Headway and Same You, two charities which help to improve life for people who have had a brain injury.
Greenside @ Infirmary Street
Aug 8-10, 12-17
Group: Rise Strong
Review by Lisa Sibbald