Lovesong (Oberon Modern Plays)

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Lovesong (Oberon Modern Plays)

Lovesong (Oberon Modern Plays)

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Her The Night is Darkest Before the Dawn was written and performed as part of The Great Game: Afghanistan cycle of plays which recently toured to the Pentagon. The absolute precision and fluidity of movement that was choreographed created the sense of the performance feeling like an actual love song.

This image linked to the earlier conversation between Maggie and Bill, when she told him that she would want him to relive memories and revisit places they’d been together when she was gone. I think the reason it was so particularly hard-hitting was that even though physical theatre elements and explorative strategies created a non-naturalistic effect, the original plot beneath it is an entirely realistic depiction of a couple’s lives together and shows how being so in love and having each other as a constant shields them from recognising how quickly the things around them change until they’re near the end of their lives. The use of lighting was often dependant on the use of music, which worked together to frequently evoke the emotions that Frantic Assembly seeks to gain from its audience. Maggie’s death was choreographed very simply, and yet managed to create an extremely sorrowful atmosphere. The use of levels in this scene aided the visual impact; as their future selves were sat directly behind them.An aspect of the set left open to interpretation was the use of the autumn leaves scattered across the stage floor; I believed this was symbolic of decay and time passing.

This scene created a mellow atmosphere amongst the audience and also carried a sense of dramatic irony, as the young couple discussed their plans for what their lives would be like in future. Her plays Splendour and Tiny Dynamite were commissioned by Paines Plough and are published by Oberon Books. I say ‘watched’ but frankly I could only gaze at the play through tearful eyes; it is deeply moving without being in the least sentimental, achingly sad without being morbid. Lovesong plays at the Drum Theatre Plymouth 30th September to 15 October 2011, then opens in Washington DC in Autumn 2011 followed by a run at Sheffield Crucible from 19th October. To calculate the overall star rating and percentage breakdown by star, we don’t use a simple average.Rather than just getting the bill and admitting we were on different pages we chatted about the similarities! Lovesong’ worked as a Dali timepiece but made one ache for a recent past when such lovely works of art could be enjoyed in real time. One aspect of the direction which I found particularly thoughtful was the way that scenes which clearly showed Maggie and Margaret as being the same character, as an obvious choice would’ve been to have them speak some of the same lines or do some of the same actions- however this never happened.

The magic realism of the story is also enhanced by occasional balletic movements well delivered by the older couple Phillips who was pushing 80 when the play was filmed is an astonishing dancer.There is something a trifle over-elegiac about the evening, and the script is frustratingly hazy on detail. Abi Morgan’s love story time-warps us through the 40 years’ marriage of Maggie (Siân Phillips) and Billy (Sam Cox). This moment allowed for the audience to confirm that the older and younger couple were in fact the same people; costume choice for both women and both men were identical. Whilst these furnishings were used beautifully for seamless entrances and exits of the actors (such as when Maggie walks into the wardrobe, and the younger Margaret steps out) the rest of the spacious stage was left empty; allowing room for scenes of elaborate physical theatre.

Using these furnishings for entrances and exits gave the impression of all their memories together being tucked away. What we loved about those was the hero's grand romantic gesture that risked being missed or misunderstood by the object of his love. Moving from England was their first leap of faith, setting up Billy's dentistry business another, but a lifetime later it is the sick, frail Maggie who is doing the jumping, and she needs Billy to help her prepare.Wheelchair spaces and their adjacent seats for accompanying guests are not available to book online. Throughout the performance I thought of Maggie and William as a unit, and so when Maggie died it felt as though William was left at a loose end and appeared vulnerable without Maggie; the sorrowful atmosphere could’ve easily accounted for the death of both characters. The kitchen and bedroom of Maggie and Billy's house, where the walls were never scribbled on by longed-for children, are stalked by the ghosts of their younger selves: the smooth-skinned, radiant Margaret (Leanne Rowe) and William (Edward Bennett). The set was simplistic; only featuring basic statement furnishings of the house (such as the fridge, table, bed and wardrobe). Despite maintaining their individual personality traits, the relationship of the couple seemed to change in many ways as they grew older.

  • Fruugo ID: 258392218-563234582
  • EAN: 764486781913
  • Sold by: Fruugo

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