Award-winning writer for stage and screen Carla Grauls debuts her new play in Battersea’s Theatre 503. 

Darkly comical, Occupied challenges the issue surrounding immigrants and takes a brazen approach to cultural stereotypes. 

The play follows the path of two Romanian immigrants, both obsessed by a yearning to belong, who kidnap an Englishman to learn how to be English.

Seemingly sinister, the play is streaked with comedy, exemplified by the fact it is set in a derelict public toilet.

For Occupied, Grauls draws inspiration from her own visit to Romania as well as Britain’s response to Eastern European immigration following the enlargement of the European Union.

Though it tackles sensitive issues, the play has received support from the Romanian Cultural Centre in the UK.

Grauls is artistic director of the Hurlyburly Theatre Company. Recently she received the 2013 Nick Darke Award, and has also been noted as a finalist in the Channel 4 Talent Awards in the dramatic writing category and was short-listed for the BBC Writersroom Sharps competition during 2008.

Occupied was first performed at Labfest 2012, a festival showcasing new plays and received critical acclaim.

The play is directed by Anna Mors; recipient of the Kevin Spacey Foundation grant in 2013 while set and costume was created by accomplished designer Petra Hjortsberg.

Occupied; Theatre 503, Battersea Park Road, Battersea; April 1 to April 26, 7.45pm, Sunday, 5pm; £15;