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Show Description

A Suffocating Choking Feeling is a subversive interrogation of truth in the age of social media inspired by Instagram’s most infamous wellness influencer and cancer “survivor” Belle Gibson (as seen on BBC’s ‘Bad Influencer’).


Living day to day, not knowing if tomorrow will come, Simone Hamilton is overcoming the odds. Rising star singer and influencer, her followers have witnessed it all.

But what makes them believe it’s all true?

Blending live performance with video streaming and interactive social media experiments, Simone explores influencer culture and our dangerous obsession with crafting “authentic” versions of ourselves online.

With dark humour, A Suffocating Choking Feeling plays with the boundaries of truth and ethics, testing audiences’ willingness to believe…

​Created and performed by Simone French with Dramaturgy and Videography by Tom Halls, this show established their company TomYumSim with its mission to produce interactive theatre that engages audiences and challenges them to think critically about themselves and the world around them.

Supported by Camden People’s Theatre, Theatre Deli & Pleasance Theatre.

Best Contemporary & Experimental Performance – Green Room Awards 2021

Best Theatre Nominee – Melbourne Fringe 2020.


"Not shying away from the provocative" - The Guardian

"TomYumSim walk the fine line between madness and truth" - The Plus Ones

"Absurd, brilliant, and entertaining" - TheatrePress ★★★★

The show would be suitable for traditional theatre slots as well as late night showings – could be easily performed after an another production in a later slot due to its minimal staging requirements.


Audience Development and Box Office Success

The show was first performed as a scratch version at CRAVE Festival (Royal Central School of Speech and Drama) showing 2019. The show was then performed further scratch showings at Barrel Organ 2019, Pleasance London 2019, Cambridge Junction 2020, Melbourne Digital Fringe Festival as a digital experiment (where it was nominated for Best Theatre Award), Edinburgh Fringe Pleasance Theatre Digital Fringe 2021, Camden People’s Theatre as a work in progress showing, then as a Residency in 2022 with Get on The Internet.

The show has received a Green Room Award in Australia, and has been highly engaged with both as digital and live performances with our digital audiences spanning from 100 people to over 300 per zoom performance. The full live version has been performed to sold out audiences at Camden People’s Theatre in 2021.

This winter sees the show completing its development, performing as part of the Pleasance Theatre Futures Festival 30 Nov and 2 December 2023 before embarking on a national and international tour in 2024.

Dates confirmed so far include a week run at Le Mama Theatre, Australia in February 2024.


Age Guidance 12+

References to death and cancer within the show mean we would advise a minimum age of 12 years old for audiences. We would also advise venues to advertise this as a potential trigger warning.

Target Audiences

University students, social media users, experimental theatre goers, audiences drawn to stories of con-artist / internet scammers, audiences that enjoy thought-provoking theatre,

politically engaged audiences.

Technical Spec

A Suffocating Choking Feeling can be flexible to the spaces it is going to. Below is an ideal map out of the tech spec that is preferred, but we are happy to discuss with venues.

Running Time
60 minutes, no interval.

Get In, Tech and Rehearsal
Day 1:
10:00 – 17:30 Technical
19:30/20:00 - Performance 1

Consecutive performance days:
19:30/20:00 Performance 2

Get out completed by 23:00 following end of show.

X1 technician provided by the venue for above allocated times.

A strong WiFi connection is required.

PA System (2 Main Speakers)
Aux/USB Connection
Mic (Wireless/Corded)

Projector (Project from Front)


Stage space requirements
Min: 4 x 4 metres

1 x Chair
1 x Small Table

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Recent Review

"Here's where you'll put your favourite review quote" Susanna Amato, Number 9

References for the show

"Here's where you'll put your favourite reference quote" Peter Smith, Melborne Digital Fringe

Audience Feedback

"Here's where you'll put your favourite reference quote" Peter Smith, Melborne Digital Fringe

The reviews are in! Read full reviews from Melbourne Digital Fringe 2020 and Edinburgh Fringe 2021.

Read references for the shows from previous venues and events it has performed at here ADD LINK TO EPK CONTENT FOLDER ON DRIVE

See what our audiences have to say about the show here ADD LINK TO EPK CONTENT FOLDER ON DRIVE


Click below for rehearsal photos and marketing images 


Who We Are

TomYumSim (Simone French and Tom Halls) are an experimental performance duo based across the UK and Australia, known for provocative participatory theatre and challenging conventional notions of performance art. Recent credits include: Rebels of Extinction (Manchester International Festival), Trapped in the Museum (People’s History Museum, Manchester); String Lines (Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester), Rage Face (The Yard Theatre, London) & Nothing Special (Camden People’s Theatre, London).

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