James Fritz’s play Lava is a drama set in the aftermath of a asteroid strike on the capital city, exploring grief, masculinity and the power of expression. It was first performed at Nottingham Playhouse on 15 June 2018, produced by Fifth Word and Nottingham Playhouse.
The play is set in an unspecified English town, in a time period not far removed from the present. A young man called Vin has lost the power of speech, and the only person who seems to notice is his friendly colleague Rach, who resolves to find out what’s troubling him and help him find his voice again. Vin's condition seems to be related to recent events in London, which has been hit by a small asteroid, displacing thousands of people. But Rach's concern for Vin, and their growing intimacy, is overtaken when her family take in Jamie, an articulate and charismatic survivor of the asteroid incident. Suddenly Vin is no longer Rach's first priority, and the resulting tensions bring the truth about Vin’s silence to the surface.
The premiere production was directed by Angharad Jones and designed by Amy Jane Cook. It was performed by Fred Fergus (as Jamie), Safiyya Ingar (as Rach), Emma Pallant (as Vicky) and Ted Reilly (as Vin).