Although World Haemophilia Day is always on 17th April we held the Civic Reception on the 19th to allow those who attended to combine the event with a trip to the theatre. Inverness based production company, Dogstar, have worked with two Scottish people with Haemophilia to dramatize the contaminated blood disaster, in a new play called Factor 9.
The Provost spoke eloquently about the importance of World Haemophilia Day and the work of Haemophilia Scotland and gave us some background to our historic surroundings. Our Chairman, Bill Wright responded with our thanks to the Provost but also highlighted the situation for the majority of people with bleeding disorders around the world. The themes of World Haemophilia Day this year was Speak Out: Create Change. Bill pointed out that this had been very effectively done through the play. Bruce Norval, whose personal testimony was used to write the play, then led a round of applause to the actors, writer and everyone involved in the production. He spoke movingly about the importance of the story of the contaminated blood story being more widely known.
The play itself more than lived up to expectations. The sheer emotional power of the script and performances lead to an electric atmosphere in the Eden Court Theatre. Nobody who sees the production can fail to be deeply moved and leave the theatre deep in though.
A current campaign on the crowd funding website, Kickstarter, is very successfully raising funds to bring the play to the world famous Edinburgh Fringe in August. Every penny pledged will allow this important play to be seen by a wider audience. Haemophilia Scotland has donated £532 to the campaign – that’s £1 for each of the 532 people with bleeding disorders in Scotland who were infected in the contaminated blood disaster.