Fringe First Award and Fringe Review Award Winner 2008


Ice-creams, suitcases, floorboards and buttons tell the physically and visually moving tale of a young Eastern European girl and her journey to England.

A beautifully woven patchwork of accounts, misunderstanding, movement, text and original music; ‘In a Thousand Pieces’ sees The Paper Birds deliver this touching and delicate depiction of the violent, isolated and brutal world home to thousands of women forced into the British sex trade. ‘In a Thousand Pieces’ sees stories, events, voices and settings packed up and unpacked from battered and bruised suitcases by battered and bruised women; whilst their stories fracture, reform, repeat and take on new shapes and forms exploring the epidemic of sex slavery. Nominated for The Stage’s ‘Best Ensemble’ Award, Total Theatre’s ‘Best Young Company’ and The Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award 2008   Premiered at Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Gilded Balloon, 2008.

Written & Performed by: Jemma McDonnell, Elle Moreton, Kylie Walsh

Additional cast: Elizabeth Carter, Georgie Coles, Shona Cowie, Josie Dale-Jones, Catriona Giles

Director: Jemma McDonnell

Producer: Elle Moreton

Music & Sound Design: Shane Durrant

Set Design: Ellen Dowell

Lighting Design: Vince Field

Dramaturgy: Ben Francombe

'In this exploration of sex slavery in 21st-century Britain, The Paper Birds proves itself an accomplished company, capable of devising highly inventive and relevant work... In a Thousand Pieces may leave the viewers shattered, but it is absorbing, essential and surprisingly lovely viewing.'

The Stage