DEBBIE Tucker Green's heartbreaking one-woman play Random is playing at the Leeds Playhouse Pop-Up Theatre at the same time as a South Yorkshire classic, Kes.

Random, performed at 8.45pm nightly, depicts an ordinary day in the ordinary life of an ordinary family, until one random act – a knife crime – changes everything and the bewildered family becomes caught up in catastrophe and grief.

Kes, adapted by Robert Alan Evans from Barry Hines's novel, is a working-class teenage tale of youth, identity and growing up facing adversity, presented at 7pm each night.

"Written 40 years apart, Kes and Random are an unlikely but unique pairing, both sharing the experience of youth," says Leeds Playhouse artistic director James Brining. "It’s a pleasure to be able to play these two powerful stories together."

Kiza Deen, whose credits include DCI Naomi Silva in Silent Witness and Sonia Albright in Hollyoaks, stars in Tucker Green's 55-minute play, directed by Gbolahan Obisesan, a former associate director of the Young Vic Theatre.

"I am absolutely delighted to be working with Kiza," he says. "She came into the audition room and totally blew us away. She connected with the world of the play, found a voice for the characters and showcased her talents and intuition as an actor. She has the depth to understand the range of emotions required to make Randon resonate with audiences and be affected by her performance."

York Press:

Random act: Kiza Deen in rehearsal for Random at Leeds Playhouse

Gbolahan is directing in Leeds for the first time, at the helm of a play first staged in London ten years ago. "The Leeds Playhouse contacted my agent to ask if I would be interested in directing it. It was as simple as that, and I thought it would be a great chance to come to this city and do what I hope is a powerful production," he says.

"I love the play; it's a beautifully crafted piece, told from the perspective of a young woman and her family as it explores the emotional turmoil around the heartbreakingly social concern of knife crime."

Seeing a link between Random and Kes, he says: "You can home in on how the teenagers in both stories are marginalised at a time when they're not valued and their futures are not valued by the rest of society. Through this disenfranchisement they become vulnerable to being victimised," he says. "In these two plays about young people in Britain, we can potentially see ourselves, our families and the risks we must try to eradicate as a society for the next generation."

What does Gbolahan read into the play's title? "I don't think Debbie likes to explain her titles too much. It's there for the individual to infer the meaning but obviously a lot of innocent lives do get lost to street violence, or a knife crime in this case, through random acts," he says.

"It's difficult sometimes for young people, when they're trying to navigate a very precarious time in their lives, to make the right choices, and sometimes they make detrimental, fatal choices that inflict very damaging consequences on themselves and other people."

Random runs at Leeds Playhouse Pop-Up Theatre until February 16, 8.45pm. Box office: 0113 213 7700 or at