mon0lisa Productions, a Nottingham-based one-woman theatre company, is staging a unique new play to coincide with National Heart Month at the New Art Exchange, in the city.

‘A Tale of Two Woman’ which is being supported by the British Heart Foundation, will explore how feelings and psychological and emotional issues can affect the way we look after ourselves, and therefore our health.

They use many words linked to the heart to describe their feelings, from heartfelt to heartbreak, but do emotions really affect heart health?

The play will also explore health and wellbeing themes around Jamaican and British cultural identity and belonging, to reflect the ongoing work mon0lisa Productions is doing with the British Heart Foundation to raise awareness of heart health in Nottingham’s African Caribbean community.

The one-woman tour de force behind mon0lisa Productions, Lisa Jackson, says:

“The play is called A Tale of Two Woman to reflect Jamaican patois and it explores the emotional and psychological issues involved in health and wellbeing, against a backdrop of Jamaican and British cultural identity.

It looks at how the love of one man by two different women has taken them in different directions in their lives.

It’s a story of friendship, love, betrayal and loss and I hope it engages and touches audiences, making them think about their own lives and how health and wellbeing can be affected by things we don’t usually think about, such as culture and the way we deal with emotions.”

This work is part of the Hearts and Minds programme being run by the British Heart Foundation in partnership with Nottingham community organisations, to tackle heart health in Nottingham’s Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities. It’s the first programme of its kind in the UK outside London.

Ali Orhan, Project Manager (BME Communities) at the British Heart Foundation said:

“Lisa Jackson has worked tirelessly with Nottingham’s African-Caribbean communities to highlight their increased risk of high blood pressure, diabetes and stroke. Her inspiring play brings to life the very real struggles that thousands of people are living with each day and the relationship between our physical and emotional health.

Making healthier choices can feel overwhelming, which is why this year our Heart Month is about making small, sustainable changes to your lifestyle that can have a lasting impact. By taking 10 minutes a day to get moving, adding one or two pieces of fruit more a day, or finding a way to quit smoking can make all the difference – and every 10 minutes counts!”

 ‘A Tale of Two Woman' is at New Art Exchange on February 26, 27 and 28.