Presented By Actors Touring Company and Young Vic

Family Tree

27 August, 7.30pm | 28-30 August, 2 & 7.30pm

Duration: 80 minutes

What to Expect: On the Move

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Tickets: £15 / £10 concession

Matthew Xia, who directed 846 Live at last year’s festival, returns to GDIF with a new play by Mojisola Adebayo, inspired by the life of Henrietta Lacks, an African American woman, whose cells were harvested and cultivated without her consent after her death from cervical cancer in 1951. The so-called HeLa cells have been vital to studying disease, decoding the human genome, and have even contributed to the development of the COVID-19 vaccines. Exploring timely themes around exploitation and ethics in healthcare, this is a powerful, site-responsive promenade piece.

Recommended age guidance 13+ 


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Site Access

There is level access to the performance locations. 

Ramps will be installed to provide level access and the same route for all audiences. There are some moments of being on grass or rougher terrain, but no gravel or for too long. Viewing area 

This is a promenade performance, where the audience moves to each location. In your booking please specify if you require a seat. Space for wheelchair users at the front and a variety of seating options will be available.  

On-site walking distances  

A few minutes walk between each of the sites, some stnading room. 

Respite and Access Areas 

The parks around Chalton Gardens have some quiet areas and there is the option to leave at anytime. 

Accessible Toilets 

Inside Charlton Park (Cafe) 

Blue badge parking  

Blue Badge spaces in Charlton House Car Park. Please contact [email protected] with your registration plate to book a space.  

Access drop-off point 

At Charlton House 

Photo route 

Available to download in ‘Where to Find it’ section.  


Alex if you have any Access questions: [email protected] // 07899 893 935 

Other audience questions, contact our Box Office: [email protected] 


Show Access


Friday 27 Performance Access:

  • BSL Interpreted
  • Captioned Performance
  • Audio Described
  • Relaxed Introduction

Saturday 28, 2pm Performance Access:

  • Captioned
  • Audio Described

Access content will be available online via your mobile phone. Please bring a charging pack if you are concerned about battery use.


Large-print and Easy Read versions of the festival brochure will be available to download in advance or to pick up on the day. Visit our Access page for more information.

Content & Trigger Warnings:

Includes reference to historical, non-consensual, medical experiments on Black women and children. Racial violence is discussed, and racist language and profanity is used. Younger viewers may find some scenes upsetting.

BSL interpreted description and Audio Description about the show is coming soon.

Notes for Audiences

This is an outdoor promenade performance for 60 minutes. Seats will be provided in some areas where the action pauses. Travel light.

Captions will be provided by the Difference Engine. We recommend downloading the App before arrival and bringing a personal charging pack for your phone.
You can download the app by clicking here.

Where to find it

Family Tree will be performed at Charlton House and Gardens, Charlton Road, SE7 8RE.

Download our photo route for Charlton House here.

About the company

Written by Mojisola Adebayo, Directed by Matthew Xia, Design by Sandra Falase, Music by Fran Rivers, Movement by Vicki Igbokwe.

Mojisola Adebayo is a British born, Nigerian / Danish performer, playwright, director, producer, workshop leader and teacher. She has worked in theatre, radio and television, over the past two decades, performing in over 50 productions, writing, devising and directing over 30 plays and leading countless workshops, worldwide, from Antarctica to Zimbabwe.

Matthew Xia one of the busiest and most exciting directors in the UK, was appointed Artistic Director of Actors Touring Company in November 2018. He is a former Associate Artistic Director of Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester; Director in Residence at Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse; and Associate Director of Theatre Royal Stratford East.

Actors Touring Company (ATC) is the UK’s leading theatre producer of international plays. ATC create dialogue between Britain and the rest of the world – and between the intersecting cultures within nations.

ATC are passionate about giving voice to the ‘outsider within’, creating a dialogue between those deemed ‘the other’ and audiences in every UK region and beyond: from Scarborough to Hong Kong.

Supported by

Co-commissioned by Actors Touring Company and the Young Vic, and presented as a work in progress production for outdoor premiere with FESTIVAL.ORG.

Family Tree is supported by Arts Council England, Royal Greenwich Festivals and Cockayne Grants for the Arts, a donor advised fund at the London Community Foundation. With thanks to the Royal Greenwich Heritage Trust and Charlton House.

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