Necessary Work

A play written by Will Thacker.

Prime Minister Tobias Quantick is tired of Downing Street. Overworked and unpopular, the slick centrist has dashed the hopes of a generation. So when Tobias discovers an algorithm for perfect governance, the choice is clear. Be the most disappointing PM in history, or put a super computer in charge of everything. Led by the machine’s perfect decisions, Tobias rebuilds Britain and is loved once more. But when the algorithm takes a dark new twist, Tobias must decide if the truth is really worth it.

Combing traditional and futurist themes represented the narrative of Necessary work. Using a silhouette of ‘British Culture’ strengthened tradition. Layering the 1’s and 0’s over the whole piece is a nod to the insidious nature of technology. It is embedding into our sense of culture and identity. The suited character is a representation of prime minister Tobias Quantick. AI overrides any decision made by Tobias. Tobias become a logo of political presence rather than an autonomous leader. No hands symbolises the abstract and surreal world where AI has no tangible existence. The top of Big Ben falling over further symbolises the end of tradition. Adding the scratches and stains felt necessary to bring back something that can feel worn and broken while also setting the scene for an important plot in the play.