A musical exploring the highs and lows of having ADHD will take over one of Merseyside’s most exciting new venues, Shakespeare North, this July.
ADHD The Musical: Can I Have Your Attention Please? is the brainchild of Dora Colquhoun, a neurodivergent theatre maker and performer based in Liverpool. With the help of Dolly Parton, Julie Andrews and Cher, the piece attempts to unpack the feelings of shame and failure commonly felt by those with the disorder.
With support from Arts Council England, Dora worked with Professor Joydeep Bhattacharya – a neuroscientist from Goldsmiths University in London – to produce the musical comedy lecture which navigates the challenges of being diagnosed with ADHD as an adult.
The show also explores the differences in which ADHD manifests in men and women, something which the medical profession has only relatively recently begun to acknowledge.
Dora herself said:
“It is a really important time to be sharing this work. ADHD and neurodiversity only very recently is prevalent in mainstream society.
For many years women have been left out of the conversation and research. I hope to provide an honest, eye opening and entertaining account of my experience as a woman with ADHD. My aim is to create acceptance, understanding and open up the conversation as to what having ADHD means. I do not have any answers, but I have stories, songs and multiple wigs.”
The exciting and heartfelt production, which was described as “a beautiful, poignant, moving and incredibly important ride from start to finish” by the Liverpool Theatre Festival, is a journey of self discovery and self acceptance that looks to end the stigma and address common dismissals of ADHD.
As Dora herself says of the show, “Let me take you by the hand and explore: Why people with ADHD are drawn to new experiences? Why have I had so many jobs? Why did I drink enough to kill a small horse before a job interview?”
ADHD The Musical: Can I Have Your Attention Please? runs from 20th to 22nd July 2023 at Shakespeare North and is set for a UK tour in the autumn. Tickets are available now from the venue’s website.