Plays

How to get your dreams on the stage!

[caption id="attachment_227" align="aligncenter" width="1000"]My favourite dream - flying! So beautiful to recreate on stage My favourite dream - flying! So beautiful to recreate on stage[/caption] You know when you wake up and you've just had the most amazing dream. You'll never forget it! Until, of course, a few minutes later when it's completely slipped away and no matter how hard you try you can't get it back. So you try to keep a dream diary, but half the time you don't write your dream down (the pen doesn't work/isn't there at the right time and/or a cup of tea/coffee/more sleep beckons....) When you do write your dream down you're really not sure where to go with it next? One of those generic online/in-book interpretations maybe? Then what? Analyse it, understand the message (there's a message?), use it as material for your next piece of creative writing (ummm, maybe). Dreams are strange and slippery things, maybe we should wake up and bask in them before they leave us, just absorb some of the dreamy fabric of the night and not try to hold on too tightly. And maybe, whilst basking, you could use this strange dreamworld to inspire a stage production? I did, it was fantastic fun - let me share a bit of the journey. (more…)

By Barbara, ago
Plays

Darkness in the Night …

[caption id="attachment_577" align="aligncenter" width="960"]There is a story behind this wonderful expression of Liam's, but you really don't want to know .. There is a story behind this wonderful expression of Liam's, but you really don't want to know .. Sam Collins as Dave and Liam Stobart as Bob. Photo by Tom Flathers[/caption] This week we had loads of fun filming a few scenes from Rob Hockley's play 'Darkness in the Night'. I'll be spending most of the weekend editing the various takes before placing the finished product in a prominent position on the site (and doubtless, on the blog) next week. We might well have a blooper reel as well - I'll see that gets the attention it deserves! For those of you who have no idea what the play is about (and I'm guessing that would be most of you) I shall briefly try and describe just how ludicrous it is.... (more…)

By Barbara, ago
Plays

Watch out for sneaky ghosts …

[caption id="attachment_347" align="alignnone" width="430"]The Ghost sneaks up on Gerald The Ghost sneakily sneaks up on Gerald[/caption]

Gorgeous Gerald and the Ghost is short sketch (around 15 minutes) in rhyme and is one of my favourites. It can be dramatised with all the characters taking lines, it can be dramatised with one or more readers and characters acting out the tale, it can be read as a poem, told as a story, you could sing it if you wanted to. It's part of the collection known as 'Perilous Tales' due the astonishing amount of peril it contains. Gorgeous Gerald is gorgeous (as you might expect) and he knows it...

Our story begins One fine sunny day As Gorgeous Gerald On his bed lay He said "Am I not The most gorgeous fellow My lips are so red My hair so yellow My complexion is perfect My body divine There is no body So gorgeously fine" (more…)

By Barbara, ago
Plays

Bring children to see Beauty & the Beast!

This is an old post from another blog - but one I thought worth repeating from my soapbox!! 6a00e54fcf73858834017d3e197c7a970c-800wiNot so much an order as a strong suggestion borne out of a great love for ‘children’s stories’ and much less love for the dumbing down of children’s stories…. What am I talking about? Well, time for me to explain exactly where I’m coming from in terms of children’s stories on stage. I have always loved children’s stories, myths, legends, fairy tales – you name it, they’re great! Why? Because they teach us about life in a way that is magical, beautiful, sometimes dark, sometimes quite scary, but always fair with an ending that usually uplifting (there are exceptions, but B&theB isn’t one of them). Bit like life really… Tales differ for ages of course, but there is ALWAYS a message underpinning the tale. Always something to learn, something that teaches us about how to act, how to love and how to live. This is why we should NOT dumb stories down to mere sugary, weak entertainment that does not engage a person (however old) at any level. Children may not sit around in discussion groups afterwards discussing the inner workings of the tale, but they get the message. We all do. (more…)

By Barbara, ago
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