Saturday, 14 March 2009

A cast, at last!

Technically there have been many more developments than the title would suggest, but that is probably the most exciting, and most significant. Following auditions last month, we have now recruited ten 1st year drama students to fill the majority of roles. Myself, Chris, brand-new team-member David and photographer Niall were all impressed by the auditionees and those we ultimately cast were really the cream of the crop. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the makeup of an arts degree, all who auditioned and thus all who were cast are female. For the majority of characters this is no bad thing - indeed, for parts such as God and various angels it is actually rather beneficial. Moreover, having a female Joseph will add an interesting tragi-comic tension to 'Joesph's Trouble About Mary'. However, for the characters of Lucifer, Adam and the angel Gabriel we felt we really needed male actors, and so they have been filled by members of the organising team - David, Gerard and yours truly respectively.

And so, this week, we met with all of our cast to distribute scripts, go over some key points and to give a tour of the locations we hope to use for the final performance. Before that, however, went a lot of organisation and effort - not least in the scriptwriting department. For a number of reasons already discussed we have now settled upon a somewhat contracted dramatic scope, and thus are focusing on the Creation and Fall of the Angels, the Creation and Fall of Man and the Nativity. Given the thematic overlaps of these episodes - arguments between couples, both Divine and human; the aspiration to and fall from grace - we have accordingly titled the performance 'If I Should Fall From Grace With God'. Those of you who appreciate the reference should feel very proud, you have impeccable musical taste!

Next week shall be both incredibly busy and something of a week off. Most of the team are popping down to Dublin for Borderlines XIII, an international postgraduate conference for medievalists founded at Queen's University, Belfast but since on a rotating schedule around Irish universities. Myself and Chris shall both be delivering papers on medieval drama - his a wonderfully theory-based adventure, mine on a typically niche-interest topic as the woefully under-appreciated Cornish drama. However, amongst all this we hope to confirm the time, date and place for the performance and thus to finalise, print and distribute the fantastic poster drawn by team-member Lorraine and art-directed by Chris. All being well, the poster, script-extracts and possibly some photographs will be up on the blog next week. Next Monday also we intend to hold the inaugural table-read, which shall indicate whether this whole venture will be a towering triumph or a well-intentioned disaster. Fingers-crossed!