Cast members Max Bennett & Sinead Matthews share some photos of their trip to Poland where they visited some of the real places in A Time to Reap…
1 & 2) Sinead: These were taken on the platform of Niepokalnow train station. There are statues like this one everywhere. The Virgin Mary is held very high in the hearts and minds of Polish people, and it seems there is a pressure for women to live up to her perfection and purity.
3) Sinead: I had just arrived in Warsaw and ventured out in the snow. With it being below freezing, I came in here for warmth and found a service going on. Unfortunately I was unable to follow it, but it was stunning and wonderful to just soak it all up.
4) Sinead: I took this from the train on a journey from Warsaw to the little town of Niepokalanow, where the play is set. I was transfixed by the surroundings. Especially covered in snow. This journey is incredibly important for my character, Marysia, as it’s her route out of Niepokalonow, and into the city where her life changes hugely. It’s a journey that she would know inside out.
5 & 6) Max: These are both from the church at Niepokalanow, where we took a day trip. The wooden cross is on the steps outside and the mosaic was in a side-chapel. The church itself looked more like a Soviet library than a church. My character, Piotr, has his 25th birthday celebrations at the festival here.
7) Sinead: I took this in Niepokalonow, simply because I had no idea what it said. You can guess from the pictures, but even so, there was no sign of any of these things anywhere in the town. It was like a ghost town. The only creature I came across was a beautiful little dog.
8) Sinead: This was my view at around 6:20am, watching the people of Warsaw in the freezing snow go off to work, the sun hidden by fog.
9) & 10) Max: These two pictures were taken in Sen PszczoÅ‚y, in the Praga area of Warsaw, an arty area that someone out there described it to me as Warsaw’s Shoreditch. The place was very Anglophile (they only really played English and American bands, for example), and definitely seemed like somewhere that my character, Piotr would have hung out.
11) Max: This was taken behind the University in Warsaw, where we decided that my character, Piotr, did his undergraduate degree before applying to do his masters at the LSE in London.