About the show

Rachel Bagshaw and China Plate present

The Shape of the Pain

Developed by Rachel Bagshaw and Chris Thorpe 

Written by Chris Thorpe 

Directed by Rachel Bagshaw

With an original score by Melanie Wilson


‘I don't have to remember being in pain. I'm not sure that's something we can do. And in my case, it's irrelevant. You can't remember something that's still happening’ 

One woman attempts to articulate her experience of physical pain. Pain with no apparent cause. Also, she's met someone, and they want to make this work. 

Words and an original sound score combine to create an explosive dialogue about love and perception. 

An experiment in how we talk about pain - and if we ever do that in a way someone else can understand. 

A new show from this Scotsman Fringe First award-winning team exploring life in extremity and the joy that can be found there.

All performances are captioned and audio described.

Commissioned by Battersea Arts Centre / New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich. Supported by artsdepot.  Funded by The Wellcome Trust and supported using public funds from The National Lottery through Arts Council England.




 “This is an exercise in empathy – and it is exhilarating theatre.”The Guardian


 “The masterful combination of sound design, lighting and projections coinciding with McPake’s performance offers an overwhelming glimpse into a life unwillingly shared with pain.”The Edinburgh Festival Magazine


 “This one-woman show is a smart, funny and far from disconsolate inquiry into the knowability of someone else’s experience. The sound design and visuals have a pulsing power.”Sunday Times


Cast & Creative Team

Performed by Hannah McPake

Director | Rachel Bagshaw

Writer | Chris Thorpe

Original Score | Melanie Wilson

Designer | Madeleine Girling

Video & Lighting Designer | Joshua Pharo

Movement Director | Raquel Meseguer

Access/Audio Description Consultant | Michael Achtman

Production Manager | Helen Mugridge

Associate Director | Rachel Lincoln

Sound Associate | Kirsty Gillmore

Video & Lighting Associate | Sarah Readman

Artist Wellbeing Practitioner | Louise Platt

Produced by China Plate

Now Booking

19th Mar 2019 - 23rd Mar 2019Wilton’s Music Hall, LondonBooking Now
25th Mar 2019Edge Hill University, OrmskirkBooking Now
27th Mar 2019 - 30th Mar 2019Bristol Old VicBooking Now
3rd Apr 2019Cambridge Junction Booking Now
5th Apr 2019Northern Stage Booking Now