The complexities of childhood trauma, drug addiction and shame are brought to the forefront in Kathryn O’Reilly’s second play, Poisoned Polluted, exploring the impact of being nurtured in a toxic environment. Stark, raw and bold, this original full-length poetic drama tackles uncompromising social issues and shines a light on the direct correlation between addicts, abuse and suffering which is carried within our bodies.

Kathryn (Call The Midwife, BBC; Skin in the Game, Old Red Lion, Birmingham Fest – Best Performer Award) will also take to the stage alongside Anna Doolan (Bluebird, The Space Theatre; Mighty Atoms, Hull Truck Theatre) to breathe life into her storytelling, deeply rooted in the familial bond between sisters and the consequences of a troubled upbringing.

Siblings Her (Doolan) and Sister (O’Reilly) are desperately trying to endure the scars of their past, finding a way to build a life out of the chaos, bound by the legacy of what came before them. All they have is each other, but unfortunately the sisterly ties that bind them are also what constricts them.

Poisoned Polluted is an exciting and challenging piece of theatre, blending powerful physical expression, lyrical monologues and realistic drama with original music. Hard-hitting and powerful, this piece will take the audience on a brutal journey with the characters, subjecting them to the devastating reality of an attempt to challenge the cycle of addiction within a family.

Writer Kathryn O’Reilly comments, Poisoned Polluted began as a poem inspired by real life experiences. As a playwright I am constantly exploring what it is to be human, our interactions, transactions and coping mechanisms. I am fascinated with learning more about the nature of addiction, as we all have the capacity to become addicts. Drugs don’t discriminate, but affect every walk of life, age, class, gender, culture. Why are some people’s lives destroyed by it, and others are not? It’s important to create female-led stories with new and varied characters for women, focusing on issues in society that affects us all and to raise awareness.

Poisoned Polluted
Tuesday 5th – Saturday 30th November 2019
Tuesday – Saturday 7.30pm, Saturday and Sunday 3pm
1 hour 15 mins (no interval)

The Old Red Lion Theatre, 418 St John St, Islington, London EC1V 4NJ
The nearest underground station is Angel (Northern Line) which is a short walk from the venue.

Tickets are £14.50 with some concessions available from or 0333 012 4963

Age 14+ (references to drugs and swearing) #PoisonedPollutedPlay