When a picture’s worth more than words: a theatre advert

theatre play advert example

I often put up advert examples with the aim of analysing the copy and discussing effective writing. In this case I want to do the opposite, because a flyer was given to me this morning that I thought perfectly encapsulated its story without a single word. (Lies, actually, it’s got a few written details about when the play is on and its title, but they’re not the sale.) So here is a great example of where copy is not needed:

theatre play advert example

The flyer for ‘The House of Bernarda Alba’.

You can immediately get a feel for the subject matter of this local Brighton production, Federico Garcia Lorca’s The House of Bernarda Alba, put on by Pretty Villian Productions. In fact, just looking at the mirrored picture in the middle I could almost tell you a whole story that I’d expect to see. I don’t know how accurate I’d be, but that’s a strong enough feeling for me to think it’s a play I could immediately understand. I’m not going to analyse what the image makes me think – I don’t think I need to, you decide on that yourself. But part of me wants to see the play just to find out if it is the story I think it is.

The power to tell a whole story with a single image (well, in this case two images, if you want to be picky) is a very fine art. One with the potential to remove all need for copywriting. It might only work for certain products, such as in recreating the emotions a theatre play can induce, but it’s definitely worth being aware of. There’s an awful lot going on in this flyer, and to my mind it’s been perfectly produced. So if you’re in Brighton and looking for a local production, from an independent theatre group, I’d recommend this play just on the basis of the quality of their flyer.

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