Thursday, 18 June 2015

Max Emmerson talks Dramaturgy and Shout - the Mod Musical

GKV: What inspired this production: did you begin with an idea or a script or an object?
Max Emmerson: This production had already been produced and had great success last year, this year we had the opportunity to bring back the show to a bigger audience for a longer run, and we couldn’t resist the chance to come on board and help take the show to the next level. The fact the show had such great success from a group of friends creating the show from scratch is amazing.

Why bring your work to Edinburgh?
Apart from being one of the most beautiful cities in the world, to be around hundreds of shows and thousands of creative people telling their own stories in a place of support and a desire to help. 

Edinburgh has a different vibe to other fridge productions, whether it’s an off-west-end theatre's in-house production or Camden Fringe's new writing, Edinburgh doesn’t carry an ego other festivals can do.

What can the audience expect to see and feel - or even think - of your production?

They can expect to see the story of the swinging sixties but not as imagined, many people believe this era was about relaxation, love, etc: this show takes another look at how women were subjected during this time. As well as this, it’s a feel good doo-wop musical to make you laugh and cry but with stories everyone can relate too.

The Dramaturgy Questions

How would you explain the relevance - or otherwise - of dramaturgy within your work?

The struggle for feminine equality has always been an issue, we’re all educated on the history of how people used to perceive a woman’s place in work or society and although we have grown for equality, the struggles will always be here. As we face new challenges for gay marriage / race / religion, we must always remember the fight for equal rights between sexes and Shout is here to celebrate.

What particular traditions and influences would you acknowledge on your work - have any particular artists, or genres inspired you and do you see yourself within their tradition?
With the show being a musical and created from well-known songs, it is imperative to allow the actors to have creative flexibility within the script but more importantly the songs

Do you have a particular process of making that you could describe - where it begins, how you develop it, and whether there is any collaboration in the process?
Preparation is key; the rehearsal room is a place of safety to try new ideas so it is important for a creative team to have the support and as much prepared as possible. We need to know the script inside out, to have begun making creative choices but also be prepared to adapt to the people you’re working with.

What do you feel the role of the audience is, in terms of making the meaning of your work?

I believe the audience are there to fight, they are there to fight for the characters they like and fight against the ones they don’t, they are there to fight for their own thoughts and choices and decisions. An audience member hates being patronised and having a show demonstrate how they should be feeling, so it is important for a company to find the relationship between an actor and audience member and allow them to understand.

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