Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Three playwrights and an apocalyptic drama

Just over seven weeks until Hannah is due, and here she is dancing the night away last weekend (that’s Patrick Stanier, her ‘buddy’ from their days at Guildhall).

PHOTO c Robin Rochford

She is now working as Assistant Director on her last production before her maternity break. It is the world premiere of A Thousand Stars Explode In The Sky, a new play written by three leading playwrights David Eldridge, Robert Holman and Simon Stephens, which opens at the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith on May 7th.

Hannah has worked previously with the director Sean Holmes, and elsewhere with two of the writers.

This is a rare enterprise in British theatre, three writers collaborating on the one piece.* The play is set in the late 1990’s. As the universe begins to crumble a mother gathers her sons on their family farm in the north east of England, where they prepare to face the unknown. Will a lifetime’s worth of closely guarded secrets finally be revealed and will lost love once again be found before time itself comes to an end?

The Financial Times ran a good interview with the writers last week under the headline Three playwrights and an apocalyptic drama which you can read here

A Thousand Stars Explode In The Sky runs from the 7th May for four weeks. Full details, the cast, and online booking can be found here.

*When I worked at the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh in the 1970’s we staged a production called Lay By, with seven writers: Howard Brenton, Brian Clark, Trevor Griffiths, David Hare, Steven Poliakoff, Hugh Stoddart and Snoo Wilson. It opened in August 1971 and the text can be found in the November 1971 edition of Plays and Players. I found this article in the Guardian about five women writers collaborating at the Royal Court in 2005, at the foot of which is a piece by David Edgar about his collaboration with Hare and Brenton.

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