Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Trashed Dramaturgy: David William Bryan and Sascha Moore @ Edfringe 2017

Underbelly Cowgate (Belly Dancer), 66 Cowgate, Edinburgh, EH1 1JX
Thursday 3rd – Sunday 27th August 2017, 13:40
Nineteen years working the bins and Goody's about to crack. Trashed is a grimy, booze-fuelled sucker punch of a play, bound to make you laugh until you cry. Expect love, loss, loneliness and lots of cider!

LAB RATS make their Edinburgh debut with the world premiere of a hilariously touching one- man show written by Sascha Moore and performed by David William Bryan. Trashed transforms Belly Dancer into a rancid Yorkshire fly-tipping site for a whirlwind account from Keith ‘Goody’ Goodman - a mid-thirties bin man struggling to deal with the death of his daughter whilst battling his uncontrollable thirst for booze.

Unapologetically working
class, funny and dark, Trashed is a highly physical, powerhouse of a play that will leave you breathless.

What was the inspiration for this performance?

The character was originally inspired by a real life bin man and wondering what his life was like away from his work. As the character developed, the plot took on a life of its own and began to cover many topics organically. Ultimately, the main driver behind writing the piece was a desire to put a non-traditional character centre stage and to get audiences to engage and invest in him.

·         Is performance still a good space for the public discussion of ideas?

Yes of course. Unlike film, TV etc., it remains the purest, most unedited and immediate medium. It can be an incredibly visceral and evocative experience to see issues played out within touching distance, unseparated by a screen.

How did you become interested in making performance?

We have both worked on individual projects for years before deciding to collaborate on this piece. Our backgrounds are different (a trained actor and an untrained writer), but we share a passion for telling exciting and engaging stories with depth, and producing them to a very high standard.

Is there any particular approach to the making of the show?
We worked hard to find the point at which character and performer met which involved multiple rewrites and workshop sessions. The script evolved constantly over time, right up until the day of the first performance at our work-in-progress run. We also wanted to produce a sensory show – once which made people feel a certain way, rather than just telling them what happens.

Does the show fit with your usual productions?
This is our first production as a company, but it epitomises what we want to achieve with our work going forward. It is a deeply moving story about a three-dimensional and deeply flawed character which addresses themes universal to us all; nostalgia, grief and self-sabotage.

What do you hope that the audience will
We hope the audience will feel a range of emotions: joy, shock, sadness, amusement. Most of all, though, we hope they are entertained. Sometimes theatre can be an ordeal to watch, especially when tackling some of the heavier subjects matters. However, we feel theatre’s primary purpose is to entertain and it is important to us that people go away from the show having enjoyed themselves.

What strategies did you consider towards shaping this audience experience?
Absolutely everything you do as a performer, writer, director, producer or designer will shape the audience experience. It was important to us that all of these aligned to create a cohesive experience, and we worked hard with a small team to ensure every aspect compliment the overall tone of the play.

Goody is a raucous anti-hero whose life is, quite literally, rubbish. Unable to talk about his feelings and just about ready to explode, he has a dark secret; one of many things he’s hiding in this ominous rubbish dump. For one hour only, Trashed lets us see the world through the eyes of a man learning to express himself but realising it’s way too late in the game. He’s overconfident, insecure, brash, bitter, playful, downtrodden and very, very drunk. But when does it stop being funny and just become tragic?
Writer Sascha Moore comments, Trashed is, at its core, a story about loss: of loved ones, opportunity and of oneself. Emotions associated with grief are universal and easily recognisable, but our coping strategies are widely varied, in both method and effectiveness. I wanted to explore what happens when our ability to self-soothe fails and our pain manifests itself in disastrous ways. Is tragedy ever a justifiable excuse for bad behaviour? Is the distinction
between villain and victim really as explicit as we assume it to be? Or is it just too abhorrent to consider that we are all on the verge of doing something unthinkable?

David William Bryan and Sascha Moore met at a writer’s group at the Bush Theatre in 2012. They formed LAB RATS in 2016, out of a mutual desire to produce affordable, high quality and engaging fringe theatre which is as accessible and entertaining to first time theatre goers as it is to regular audiences and those in the industry.

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