Spun | Arcola Theatre

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27 June–28 July 2018

Arcola Theatre


by Rabiah Hussain

Directed by Richard Speir

“Yeah, but where are you really from?”

Safa and Aisha have been best friends for years. They used to bunk off school, revise for exams together and even went to the same university.

But now they’re forging different paths for the first time: Safa to work in the City, and Aisha to teach in Newham.

When London is attacked one day in July, Safa and Aisha feel the whole world spinning. As extremes from all sides take hold of the city, can their friendship survive the upheaval?

Spun is the exhilarating debut play from Rabiah Hussain. Seen through the eyes of two British Pakistani Muslim girls from East London, this funny and moving drama unravels the makings of a friendship, microaggressions in the city, and the challenge of keeping rooted through unstable times.


Q&A: British Asian women in the arts and media

Monday 9 July, after 8pm performance

Writer and broadcaster Yasmeen Khan hosts Rabiah Hussain with actors Humaira Iqbal and Aasiya Shah in a special panel discussion around narratives and representation of Asian women in the arts and media, where they will also share their experiences of opportunities and challenges across the creative industries.

Free for all same-day ticket holders


★★★★ An utterly distinctive voice: playful yet profound, rooted, class-conscious and effortlessly poetic.
★★★★ Fresh and thrilling ... an accomplished debut play about friendship that bubbles with original humour
—The Stage
★★★★ Powerful, challenging work
—Morning Star
A powerful tale of female friendship and an intimate look at navigating race, religion and class in modern day Britain, Rabiah Hussain’s debut is pure brilliance
—Theatre Bubble
A spellbinding, assured debut
—Fringe Review
Adds to the emerging call for more working-class voices in theatre
—The Reviews Hub
  • Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • (c) Alex Brenner (info@alexbrenner.co.uk)

  • Credit: Shazad Khalid

  • Credit: Shazad Khalid

  • Credit: Shazad Khalid

  • Credit: Shazad Khalid

  • Credit: Shazad Khalid

  • Credit: Shazad Khalid


Humaira Iqbal


Aasiya Shah



Rabiah Hussain


Richard Speir


Khadija Raza

Assistant Director

Catriona Tait

Movement Director

Nancy Kettle

Sound Designer

Anna Clock

Lighting Designer

Geoff Hense

Deputy Stage Manager

Catriona McHugh
Best £22 (£20 previews)
Standard £20 (£16 previews)
Value £15

Standard tickets are £12 or less with Arcola Passport.

Monday - Saturday, 8pm
All Saturdays, 3.30pm matinee


  • Students / 26 and under - 20% off Standard seats, or join Young Arcola for free to book Value seats at £10
  • 65 and over - 20% off Standard seats on Mon–Wed evenings and all matinee performances
  • People in receipt of disability benefits - free companion with full-price Standard seat or 20% off Standard seat
  • People in receipt of unemployment benefits - Value seats at £10 or 20% off Standard seats
  • Theatre union members - 10% off Standard seats
  • School and college groups (10+) - Best available seats at £12 for Mon–Wed evenings and Wed matinees, one free teacher per 10 students
  • Groups (10+) - eleventh ticket free

    Pay What You Can Tuesdays – limited allocation of tickets available in person, each Tuesday from 6pm. More info »

    Running time: 85 minutes approximately .

  • This production contains:
    Strong language
    Flashing/strobe lights
    Loud noises

    Suitable for 12+

    Press enquiries: Liz Hyder — liz@lizhyder.co.uk

    24 Ashwin Street, Dalston, London, E8 3DL
    020 7503 1646

    © 2017-19 Arcola Theatre.
    Arcola Theatre Production Company is a registered charity no.1108613. Registered as a company limited by guarantee in England no.5242988. Registered Office: 24 Ashwin Street, Dalston, London E8 3DL.

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