FIELD OF VISION by Joanna Erskine
> In Development
Tom has had trouble with his eyesight since he was a child but thought nothing of it. As an
adult he meets Nina and the two become a couple. As Tom starts to lose peripheral vision he
seeks medical advice and is diagnosed with Choroideremia, an incurable genetic disease
affecting men. Tom is told that he will slowly lose his sight, and his vision loss will progress to
tunnel vision before eventually full vision loss by his 40’s. Tom and Nina are only in the first
year of their relationship.
Field of Vision is the story of Tom and Nina’s shared journey towards vision loss told in a
non-linear style. We see scenes from Tom’s childhood, romance with Nina, optometrist
sessions, therapy sessions, and Tom and Nina’s experiences as they navigate a new unknown
future together. As Tom loses his sight, the play takes the audience on a sensory experience
alongside him through light and lack of light. As Tom’s experience becomes more abstract, so
too does the language and tone of the play. It is an intimate two-hander where we are taken
within Tom and Nina’s fears, hopes and vulnerabilities on this unexpected journey.
Field of Vision is a play concerned with philosophical themes. The old adage ‘seeing is
believing’ rings true for most people – we make sense of the world by what we see, by what is
real and tangible before us. Our relationships, our work, our daily lives are driven by our
ability to see. But what happens if you lose your sight? How do you translate your known
experience, your tangible world, into a different experience entirely? Into other senses?
Beyond the initial fear, concerns, longing for lost freedoms, how will you prepare for this new
life? And how would you enter into a relationship with someone if you knew that you will,
one day, completely lose your sight?
What I am attempting to show through the play is that although eyes are a prerequisite for
vision, sight actually takes place in the brain. That we do not need our eyes to see the world.