Tuesday, 16 April 2013

A Statement of Intent

A.H: The actor Chris Keegan who, among many other roles, plays Cornelius in the show began our first rehearsal in Glasgow last week by telling us of his Nan’s worries for the cast’s souls. Apparently, upon learning we were doing a production of Dr Faustus she was so worried about the potential damnation of the cast that she told Chris she would be praying for both his soul and the souls of the entire cast. Well, it must be working as this first week has been an absolute success. Press Night on Tuesday went down a storm (as did the party after) and the changes we’ve added to the show are now second nature. The latter half of the week saw a birthday in the cast and a fantastic meal in the West End to celebrate before a well-earned rest on Sunday and Monday.
To be performing this show in the Citz is a joy. The production is such a clear statement of intent for the artistic vision Dominic plans to imbue all of his future seasons with. Naturally, the show isn’t perfect, there are flaws and problems but the audacity of the production combined with Colin Teevan’s rewritten middle provides so much to like.
The end of the week brought about another very clear statement of intent. Sunday saw the one night extravaganza that was Tell Me the Truth About Love. Organised by the actress Maureen Beattie the night was a massive charity evening designed to help the theatre reach the finish line for its Seat Restoration campaign. It was a fantastic evening of poetry, prose and charitable auctions where many important people gave a lot of their important time for to support an important local cause. Despite having 10am rehearsals in London the next day the infamous Shakespearean actor Simon Russell Beale had come up for the day, Siobhan Redmond (who is currently very busy playing Mephistopheles in Dr Faustus) gave up one of her only two days off to rehearse and perform in the show and Billy Boyd, who had taken a day off from a busy rehearsal schedule with his band, completed the roster.
FromLeft to Right:
Billy Boyd, Siobhan Redmond, Dominic Hill, Maureen Beattie and Simon Russell Beale.
 Photo by Tim Morozzo
The evening was made by actors and patrons of the theatre alike, both coming together to help bring the 1878 built building into the 21st Century. The evening was topped off with Dominic Hill laying out his vision for the Theatre’s renovation in 2016 which will see the building of a new foyer, and backstage facilities as well as ensuring the Old Lady of the Gorbals will be here for another 100 years. Hopefully that also includes Simon Russell Beale next treading the Citizens Theatre boards in a Dominic Hill production.
On a more personal level this week saw the delivery of the final script I will be working on during my tenure as one of the two Graduate Actor Interns at the Citz: the Caryl Churchill shorts Far Away and Seagull’s. The two roles I’ll be playing couldn’t be more different and both are rather text heavy, which, hitherto, has not been the case with my roles in either Sleeping Beauty or Dr Faustus (not that I’m complaining, mind). Naturally for a playwright who has been dubbed one of the finest living English Playwright’s the plays are fantastic! One is an apocalyptic fairy tale; the other a very sweet meeting of minds; both a lovely challenge. It will also mean that Lucy and I will be reunited once more after months apart the signing in board has looked like this for too long...
Dr Faustus’ is on at the Citizens Theatre, Glasgow, until the 27th April. For all tickets please contact the box office on 0141 429 0022 or book online at www.citz.co.uk.

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