Anderson's note on the play tells us that 'Blackout is based on a true story. It was told to me by a young man called Peter over several cups of tea.
'When I spoke to him, Peter was serving a probation sentence for attempted murder. He committed the crime when he was fifteen years old and was lucky not to be in jail. I didn't really know what to expect before I met him, but Peter wasn't at all what I expected. He was funny, articulate, thoughtful, passionate, a bit cheeky. More than anything he had this burning desire to communicate. So I took his words and turned them into a short monologue. Then I gave him a copy to take home. He said he was going to read it carefully and come back to me with corrections. Next time I saw him, he told me he'd read the text out loud to his mum and that she'd cried. He also told me I got the name of his sword wrong.'
Blackout is the true story of a 15-year-old boy charged with attempted murder who tries to piece together the events in his life that have brought him into a secure care unit and threaten to keep him there. This short play packs a big emotional punch with its stylistic economy and razor-sharp storytelling.
Commissioned by the Royal National Theatre for NT Connections it was originally performed in the Cottesloe Theatre in July 2008. ThickSkin's production of the play won the Arches Brick Award, 2010, at the Edinburgh Festival before embarking on a tour of the UK.