Friday, 5 August 2016

Dramaturgy In Tents and Purposes: Roxy Dunn and Alys Metcalf @ Edfringe 2016

Assembly George Square Studios
Aug 5-14, 16-25, 27-29 1.30pm

In Tents and Purposes-dramaturgy-database-fringe
Five-star sell-out comedy from Vaults Festival London and Lyric Hammersmith exploring whether our lives are predetermined or shaped by our choices. A Viscera Theatre production written by Roxy Dunn (Channel 4 / Oran Mor Comedy Drama Award shortlisted), director Chris Head, performers Alys Metcalf (The Play That Goes Wrong, West End) and Roxy Dunn (Channel 4's Babylon, BBC Three’s Top Coppers).

What was the inspiration for this performance?
Being twenty-something and not knowing how your life is going to pan-out. (Also a real life physical fight over miming a car door...) 

Is theatre still a good space for the public discussion of ideas? 
Absolutely! Theatre is so immediate and demands an audience's attention in a way that other media doesn't, and so it's an amazing thing to throw an idea out there and feel a palpable response to what you're offering. That said, it doesn't mean theatre should be a platform solely to debate without also entertaining the audience. In our case, we wanted to create a show which made people think and feel and laugh at the same time - hopefully we've succeeded!      

How did you become interested in making performance?
We've both acted for a long time in other people's work, and then also started writing individually when we left drama school. Forming our own theatre company and performing our own writing was a natural next step for us and feels really liberating because we can draw on so many different styles of writing and performance - I think our work will continue to evolve as our tastes and influences do.

Was your process typical of the way that you make a performance?
We've only produced two shows so far and they were very different beasts, so it's fair to say we haven't yet found a typical process for making our work. This time round we had an R+D week, which was immensely helpful and we'll most likely do again for the next one. 

What do you hope that the audience will experience?
Is it too pretentious to say joy? JOY. (And a bit of poignancy thrown in there too, for good measure.) 

What strategies did you consider towards shaping this audience experience?
We initially developed the show with Lyric Hammersmith and then ran it in London at VAULT festival and so we've been constantly editing and refining bits of the script and certain comic moments since January. Essentially, we're keen to give our audience a good time and leave the theatre feeling a little warmer than when they went in. (Not literally - luckily our theatre has air-con). 

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