in quarantine


by Laura Swift and Russell Bender



by Laura Swift and Russell Bender


FRAGMENTS is currently in quarantine.

Our postponed show is penciled for 2021 - watch this space for updates. In the meantime, you can listen to our two-part podcast (scroll on down!) in which co-writers Laura and Russell discuss the ideas in developing the show.

“You. Here. Take them! Your own sliver of this story. These are the scraps that remain. You must help me weave a spell.”

Three papyrologists pore over some tattered fragments of papyrus, two thousand years old. Could they be the remnants of a lost masterpiece? The Muse, Daughter of Memory, is about to bring these shadowy lines to life…

FRAGMENTS searches for the myth of Aeyptus, a boy brought up to avenge his murdered father and brothers. Piecing his story together will take you on a journey around the fragments of your own life: memories, conjectures, things half-heard.

Springing from the one surviving scene and scattered bits of text of an otherwise lost play by Euripides, FRAGMENTS is an inventive, exhilarating adventure to the spaces in between.

Performance Dates

30th April - 16th May 2020 - The Playground Theatre, London - CANCELLED

22nd - 23rd May 2020 - The Old Fire Station, Oxford - CANCELLED

Captioned performances

If you are D/deaf, hard of hearing or would like captions for any other reason, you can download captions to your own mobile device via the Difference Engine from Talking Birds. Download the free app at

Mobile captions will be available at all performances of Fragments from 6th May onwards.

We can provide a small number of suitable mobile devices for audience members who wish to use captions but are unable to use their own device. Please email to reserve a device.


To be announced

Creative Team

Laura Swift
Russell Bender
Lucy Sierra
Jess Mabel Jones
Puppetry Director
Jon McLeod
Sound designer / Composer
Victoria Saxton
Lyricist / dramaturg
Sherry Coenen
Lighting Designer

Making the show

In 2014 the Being Human Festival and Oxford University commissioned Potential Difference to spend two weeks exploring how to retell stories from fragments of lost plays.

In 2017, we were supported by Ovalhouse, The Leverhulme Trust, The Open University and Jerwood Space to begin developing a full-length play version of the ideas we had developed. The R&D culminated in four work-in-progress performances: at Ovalhouse in London and the Old Fire Station in Oxford in October and November 2017

In 2018 we were awarded a grant by the British Academy towards developing and producing the full production of Fragments.

Fragments is written by Laura Swift and Russell Bender with additional material devised by Tom Espiner, Ben Hadley, Bella Heesom, Alistair Toovey and Sarah Quist.

Fragments the Podcast

In 2017, we made a two-part podcast series documenting our development of the show. You can listen to them here:

Episode 1 - The neuroscience of fragments with Dr Mark Stokes

Laura and Russell chat with Dr Mark Stokes, Associate Professor in Cognitive Neuroscience at Oxford University about illusions, memory and perception.

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Episode 2 - Lost plays of the ancient world

Laura and Russell talk about their inspirations behind the project and the lost literature of ancient Greece.

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Photo galleries

With support from

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