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St. Mary’s University Presents: Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down

By Richard Cameron  

Directed by Rodney Pearson


A woman’s body is found in a quarry, 8 years to the day since her son died in the same place. Three girls, strangers to each other, are bound by these events through the heartless and destructive actions of one man. Richard Cameron’s lyrical, award winning drama evokes the post-industrial landscape of quarries and weirs in South Yorkshire from the late 1970’s to the mid 1980’s. As a shared childhood memory haunts their adult lives, the girls seek to break free from the ‘fallen’ and ‘stand up’ on their own terms.


Winner of the 1990 Independent Theatre Award and the Sunday Times Playwriting Award, Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down is a powerful portrait of lost innocence. Set in and around a small town in the Don valley where people are aware of each other without being friends and told through interweaving and overlapping narratives, the play delicately explores the strength, perseverance and humour of three young women struggling to come to terms with their guilt and finding the way to overcome their damaged pasts.


Richard Cameron is a former Head of Drama at a South Yorkshire school who began writing for a local Youth Theatre group which he organised. He scored his first major success with Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down in 1990, which won a Fringe First, The Independent Theatre Award and The Sunday Times Playwriting Award. He has written extensively for radio, television and the theatre, including the Bush Theatre, the National Theatre and West Yorkshire Playhouse. Several of his subsequent plays, including The Mortal Ash, The Glee Club, All of You Mine and Gong Donkeys are set in the same area.


Rodney Pearson is a student director on the MA Theatre Directing programme at St Mary’s University. Previous directing credits include Dancing at Lughnasa, Under Milk Wood, Brassed Off, Comedy of Errors, The 39 Steps, The Tempest, Swallows & Amazons, September in the Rain and Nicola McCartney’s Lifeboat.


 June 18th-21st



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