Jess Latowicki discusses We Hope That You’re Happy, Why Would We Lie?
The actor and playwright says the comedy tackles the current 'epidemic of apathy'
‘There’s an epidemic of apathy,’ explains Jess Latowicki, one half of Made In China Theatre, along with co-writer Tim Cowbury. ‘We think we’re feeling something, but you try to do so much and experience so much that you end up just being apathetic.’
She refers to their latest piece We Hope That You’re Happy, Why Would We Lie?, an inquisitive, witty piece of theatre that bridges the gap between performance art and playwriting. The production, starring Latowicki herself and Christopher Brett Bailey, explores the idea that modern society is so overwhelmed with information and experiences that our capacity for caring has decreased enormously.
‘We are consistently given information and you never have time to switch off and just be,’ Latowicki explains. ‘We spend our lives taking things in and discarding them. In trying to feel something you don’t end up feeling anything.’
The duo spend the show searching for authenticity of emotion, an ambience that is reflected in their onstage antics and in their writing: 'The show is a version of Jess and Chris in real life – a lot of things that happen in the show are things that we've actually said.'
Despite the earnest search for meaning in a world that is often meaningless, Latowicki insists the show is not without humour:
'We don't want to shove anything down anyone's throat. Using humour is a good way to get people to engage. If anything's too heavy, people aren't going to listen.'