Written and directed by Dawn Harrison, Pizza Shop Heroes is a unique play based on true stories. The play was part of Migration Matters Festival, which usually takes place in Sheffield each June, however, this year took place online due to restrictions. The production has toured most of the UK and is produced by Phosphoros Theatre Company. The history of this company is truly inspiring as it engages mostly with refugees and asylum seekers, and not only that, the majority of the cast are made up of former unaccompanied minors – which gives the play a raw authenticity.
Pizza Shop Heroes follows the journey of four young men from Afghanistan, Eritrea and Albania travelling to the UK with hopes of seeking asylum. As suggested by the title of the play, the four young men work in a pizza shop, and this neutral location is where most of the play is set. The play functions chronologically, insisting that the audience are engaged at all times. The show also incorporates elements of humour and seriousness, making light of situations spectators would usually deem traumatic. What is remarkable about this play is that it is a genuine retelling of the actors' lives, and so they make sure to maintain their integrity. Pizza Shop Heroes explores some gripping themes such as fatherhood, colonial histories and the people left behind after displacement. Each theme is dealt with in different scenes that are explicitly introduced to the audience, which makes the play easier to understand.