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The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland

The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland


  • DATES & TIMES: Wednesday 25 - Friday 27 February, 7.30pm
  • RUNNING TIME: 1 hour 20
  • AGE GROUP: 14+
  • TICKETS: £12

    The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland

    Critically acclaimed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014, this new work from Ridiculusmus is a dual family drama about recovery from schizophrenia. It simultaneously stages the first psychotic episodes of a mother and son as they navigate stress and change with fantastical results involving Finnish Folk, Margaret Drabble, Adolf Hitler and the knitted cover for a toilet roll. 

    Their two interconnected stories are performed to separate but adjoining auditoria in the same theatre space, audible but unseen to each other.  At half time they switch seats and the action is replayed, mapping a pathway to recovery through dialogical understanding of their situation.



    'a startling piece of work that challenges how you listen and fathom what you hear' â˜…★★★ The Guardian



    'as a piece of stagecraft it is completely remarkableTime Out



    Total Theatre Award Winner - Significant Contribution to Theatre



    Wednesday 25 February

    Post show discussion, please book through Box Office as there is a limited capacity.


    We are marking the 50th anniversary of Jennie Lee's White Paper: A Policy for the Arts First Steps. Read the document here. Comment about it yourself on Twitter using #ArtsPolicy50.



    Notes from the directors:


    In The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland we are attempting a technical feat beyond our experience and knowledge: a simultaneous performance of two plays that involve the same set of characters in two different times with dialogue that intersects and occasionally intertwines in a complex but de-codable way. It is a form that seems to us an appropriate vehicle for the material we are investigating and one that conjures, as best we can, the experience of auditory hallucination and the disarmingly ordinary chaos of psychosis.  Our aim is to de-stigmatise and normalize psychosis and ultimately engage you in a quiet revolution in social interaction.


    The play has been informed by (but is by no means a demonstration) of a way of working known as ‘Open Dialogue’ which emerged in Finnish Western Lapland over a twenty year period and has since practically eradicated schizophrenia from that region. It uses a ‘dialogical’ approach to therapy inspired by the Russian literary philosopher Mikhail Bakhtin and its guiding principles include tolerating uncertainty and allowing a polyphony of voices in the treatment process. As part of our research in Finland, our characters took part in a series of treatment meetings and on every occasion we were overwhelmed with the emotional intensity of the work. We returned home glowing with the power of possibility. We wanted the play to struggle with this knowledge – that such a successful approach exists but is not yet within reach of the UK health system.

    For more information on Open Dialogue please see the website:



    Watch the trailer here:

    The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland - Trailer from Ridiculusmus on Vimeo.



    Ridiculusmus Theatre Company on Twitter: @_Ridiculusmus_