Caught up with the director, Dave Turner, today and put some motion back into the project. Covid-19 and all its attendant horrors have put a hold on things but we’re still here: watch this space for updates about new performance dates, tentatively set for October 2020.
Looking forward to next week's Zoom meeting with all the actors. How did we survive before zoom? There is a before Zoom and after – BZ and AZ. We are going to discuss the promotion of the play and the new monologues plus the original short story.
The story idea originated from a TV news report shot outside the Nissan Plant in Sunderland. A politician was saying what a “wonderful work force” they were and how “valued” they were and that a deal would be made to ensure their livelihoods. I knew from growing up and remembering the strikes in the 70s and 80s and all the primary industries being shut down how fragile the world can seem for most working-class people. The added ingredient to this conflict was Brexit and how it had ripped through the middle of many communities. What if members of a family all voted differently?
How would this play out?
Life is a bit of a gamble: heads you win, tails you lose. Pick a card, any card. Life is a lottery. All these phrases played a part in formulating the ideas for the story. Then Niall and Maddie began to take shape, with Gary and Geoff, and then later Jane, who became our narrator, the matriarchal figure of the Plant community. And the politician is in there, Gemma, powerless against the big global market machine. My next job was, how do we make this fun, interesting, theatrical, poignant, relevant, controversial, challenging, enlightening...? How to put a narrative rooted in real life and real events on stage?