Four years ago, sitting in a circle in my drama school and reading a play out loud, my heart started racing, all the words were moving. No matter how much I focused, I couldn’t get them in order. A week later, I was diagnosed with severe ADHD and Dyslexia, at the age of 29! I lived my life in the dark, for 29 years.
To be honest, somewhere I always knew something was there, but never wanted to find out exactly what. In India, there’s no such thing as dyslexia, you are “lazy and slow”. The day I got my diagnosis, I started my journey of acceptance.
My name is Mohit Mathur, I am an Indian actor/dancer/deviser-writer. I call myself a “deviser-writer” because I am still trying to find a method of playwriting that works for me. I have never written a full-fledged play, I always thought I didn’t have any intelligent words to use or profound things to say, words that would move people.
However, I have always felt the need to write, to share ideas, and in the search for tools to help me, I landed on the Wellspring programme.
It was through this programme I realised that what I have to say is important, it matters.
The course taught us to be kind to ourselves as playwrights. We’ve been introduced to new writing theatres in London. They de-mystified the process of playwriting. They showed us that if we spend some time on it, we can create more accessible work including people from all sections of society.
Through the Wellspring programme, I’ve discovered the value of self-compassion, especially during challenging times. As a playwright and creative, self-love has proven to be an essential aspect of my journey. Surprisingly, the most impactful moment in the programme was not directly related to writing but rather a meeting with Foteini regarding the Access rider. Prior to this encounter, I was unaware of this support, and Foteini graciously guided me in crafting my own, highlighting the programme’s commitment to my growth and well-being.
Being from India, I feel there is such a big part of my culture that isn’t represented in the most authentic form on the UK’s stages. Through Wellspring, I wish to bring some of those stories to life.
The piece I am currently writing is a one person show about a call centre employee from India, who, having spent years talking to people from Great Britain, has built the dream to live there someday. When he finally does make it there, he turns into a victim of modern day slavery in the UK.
It is a fantastical, absurd piece exploring the concept of “the grass is greener on the other side”. Being an immigrant myself, I feel both connected and disconnected with this story. I wish to explore how our common colonial past creates a sense of connection, while micro-aggressions and bias are still rooted in the system.
Through my writing, I aim to share intersectional stories and narratives from India and strive to foster understanding, dialogue, and empathy, challenging the barriers that lead to misunderstandings. I would love audiences leaving the theatre to consider how we all sometimes want more, often overlooking what we already have and wishing for what others possess. Yet, even when we attain what others may have, this often leaves us unsatisfied.
Mohit Mathur (he / him), Wellspring Writer 2023 – 2024
Mohit is an Indian actor/ dancer/theatre maker, a graduate from the Drama Centre London. Recently seen on the West End show “Life Of Pi”. As an artist he is currently exploring concepts of Immigration, intergenerational trauma and Britain’s colonial impact on India.
X (formerly known as Twitter): @iMohitMathur