New play by East Ham writer reveals darker side of Olympic Games

This weekend, the debut play by East Ham writer Dominic Hedges will bring darker trades brought by this summer’s Olympic Games into the light.

“...Act Like It Never Happened” tells the story of an American and a Russian who go into business together setting up a human trafficking ring to take advantage of the Olympic crowds.

Meanwhile, a recent Master’s graduate Catherine York tries to use her father’s position in cabinet to influence a revised bill on the crime.

Two worlds collide when an expenses scandal pushes Catherine’s father out of Westminster and her fiance drunkenly solicits one of the trafficked girls.

Dominic, 23, set up Leering Falcon Theatre at university in Manchester but he is currently based in Newham where he wrote and directed his topical play.

Inspiration came for Dominic through his fiancee who works with anti-trafficking charities, raising awareness among teenagers by giving talks in schools.

He said: “It all started when I was reading some literature that she would bring back home. I’d flick through it and read some of the terrifying statistics and articles about trafficking in east London.

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“This is what first gave me the idea to create a piece of theatre that specifically dealt with the issue of girls being trafficked to London for the Olympics.

“Because the Olympics can have such a positive impact on our area, these very real issues are in danger of being swept under the carpet and ignored.”

Dominic hopes his writing, coupled with the raw performances of his new, young cast, will expose the international nature of the problem.

He added: “London won’t be the first city to be hit by this influx. The World Cup in South Africa, the Superbowl, and previous Olympic Games have all been used as a breeding ground for human traffickers.

“It has happened before and will keep on happening,”

“...Act Like It Never Happened” will be performed at the Space arts centre on the Isle of Dogs from 14th to the 18th February.

Tickets are available from or by calling the Box Office on 020 7515 7799.