Every Brilliant Thing by Duncan MacMillan synopsis

Content Warning

Every Brilliant Thing is about resilience and hope and addresses aspects of mental health. It deals specifically with depression, self-harm and suicide.

When Mum’s in the hospital and Dad says she finds it hard to be happy, there’s not much a seven year old can do…

1. Ice cream
2. Water fights
3. Staying up past your bedtime and being allowed to watch TV

These are the first three items on a list of every brilliant thing in the world worth living for. Duncan MacMillan’s play Every Brilliant Thing pulls back the curtain on what it’s like to be a child of a suicidal mother and the lengths we go for those we love.

The story explores depression and hope, uncertainty and change, confusion and joy, heartbreak and anger, relationships and solitude, risk and resistance, guilt and forgiveness. Throughout, The Storyteller interacts with audience members to tell about life with his or her mother’s depression as a backdrop, including the effects it has his or her life and relationships.

Based on true and untrue stories, Every Brilliant Thing is a life-affirming story of how to achieve hope through focusing on the smallest miracles of life.

If you still want to know more watch the Edinburgh Showcase 2015 video of Every Brilliant Thing by Paines Plough, produced by British Arts Council featuring Duncan Macmillan and Jonny Donahoe…