Camden Fringe preview: in|Secure

Writer/performer Valery Reva brings her show in|Secure to Camden Fringe next month.

It is a piece from a Ukranian writer which asks the audience questions about the war they may not want to give an answer to. Using auduence participation, music and comedy, in|Secure places the ongoing conflict back in the public eye.

Read on to find out more about the show.

Promotional photo for in| Secure

Where: Lion & Unicorn Theatre

When: 18-19 Aug, 7pm

Ticket link:

What’s special about being part of the Camden Fringe?

Everything! That’s my first solo show. The first time I presented my own writing, the first festival was to participate in the UK.

And I’m happy it’s all happening at the Camden Fringe – such a supportive and open community of creators. I am looking forward to starting this exciting journey!

in|Secure is the UK’s first one woman show about the war in Ukraine. What should audiences expect?

To be absolutely clear, ‘in|Secure’ is the UK’s first one-woman show about the full-scale invasion stage of war by a Ukrainian writer-performer. In addition, in fact, about 70% of the text I didn’t write but just collected from social media and put it together.

This show presents real stories from the Ukrainians they posted on Facebook from the beginning of the Russian invasion and raises a list of questions of how ‘normal’ can be everyday life during war.

Does a refugee working to feed her child have more or less right to share her story than a soldier on the front lines? When people are dying, are you allowed to miss posting selfies to Instagram or a cup of takeaway coffee? Who has really earned the right to complain?

It is all about a human element of the war. By giving voice to individual stories, I hope to personalise the experiences attaching a face to every name and show that it is not about ‘those’ people – it is about people overall.

Do you think the British media is doing enough to highlight the current conflict? What might be done to improve things?

The war has lost its ability to shock; it has become a matter of numbers. Lately, I have been hearing more and more Londoners ask, “Is it still happening?” Sadly, I am not surprised. Ongoing conflicts tend to fade from the media’s attention once they are no longer deemed ‘newsworthy’.

Personally, I strongly believe that the media should take responsibility for sustaining public interest and raising awareness about this war. By sharing personal stories and highlighting the human impact of the Russian aggression, they can evoke empathy and help the audience connect with the issue on a much deeper level.

Furthermore, the media should delve deeper into the historical context and geopolitical factors that have contributed to this invasion. By shedding light on the threats it poses and may continue to pose, we can enhance understanding and foster a new wave of inclusion.

Comprehensive coverage requires collective efforts from both the media and society as a whole. Only together, we can ensure that the war receives the attention it deserves and that we all play a role in finding a resolution.

Theatre is a place to explore difficult topics and situations, as well as an outlet for entertainment. How does in|Secure reach audiences who might seek both?

Allow me to divulge the details: this show is not about me stepping onto the stage and solemnly declaring, “This is War. The war is incredibly tough.” It is not a dry lecture or a conventional news report. In fact, it is a dark comedy.

Imagine the beginning of a show that contains a blend of a pub quiz, a talent show, and stand-up comedy! I understand it may sound like an unconventional choice, but as Ukrainians, we have a special way of coping with life’s difficulties—we use laughter (if you only knew the number of memes people create in response to current events, you would be astounded).

Definitely, further the show develops and gradually revolves around unfiltered honesty and vulnerability (which are distinguishing features of our nation – Ukrainians have a reputation for being remarkably frank).

So be prepared for a mix of feelings: my main intention is to share with you the essence of our spirit, capturing all its intricate dimensions.

What’s next for the show after Camden?

That is a strange situation. On one side, I desire to present the show to as many people as I can right now, actively seeking opportunities for it to reach a larger audience. I genuinely appreciate any support we receive along the journey.

Concurrently, the ongoing Russian aggression necessitates the importance of discussing it. However, on the other hand, I sincerely hope for the show’s existence to cease as soon as possible: this would indicate that the war is over and that my country and loved ones are secure.