DRAMA Two Weeks With The
Queen Glasgow: Old Athenaeum Theatre, Fri lG—Mon 26 May.
When was the last time you saw a film where an American didn’t play a Brit or vice versa? If authenticity is a rare commodity in today's cultural output then allow Scottish Youth Theatre to restore your faith.
In Two Weeks With The Queen, the company tackle the big themes of AIDS, cancer, death, sickness and Royal bedwetting with a cast which matches the ages of the characters. 'We were looking to stretch the
Brother in arms: Scottish Youth Theatre in Two Weeks With The Queen
abilities of those who have been with us since they were eight, nine or ten,’ explains artistic director Mary McCluskey. ’Last year they were playing furniture in Beauty and the Beast and now they have lead parts in our Mayfest production.’
The plot concerns a teenager who wants to discuss his brother’s cancer with the Queen; while his cousin is more worried about his dandruff. Funny, moving and an education, the play is adapted from Morris Gleitzman’s gritty, witty novel, and should give its young cast something to chew on. (Brian Donaldson)
Glasgow: CCA, Fri lb/Sat l7 May.
In last year’s Edinburgh Festival review of Kaos Theatre’s Caligula, we described it as ’a stylistic melding of Dr Seuss and Sado-Masochist’s Month/y. . in turns poetic and pornographic,’ and 'dextrous to the point of complexity.’ The show returns to Scotland following a successful sell- out run in Western Australia in February.
Based in Cirencester, Kaos Theatre have a strong commitment to theOretical study, practical exploration and the investigation of performance from all over the globe. This mix is
brought to bear in this production
Complex dexterity: Kaos Theatre in Caligula
about the ruthless and notorious Roman emperor, Gaius Caligula Caesar. Somewhat miffed by the death of his sister, Caligula deserts the empire, leaVing it in a state of rum. On his return he proposes a series of unpopular policies — food rationing is ordered, politICIans’ wives are given a new home in the state whorehouse, and statesmen and their families are dispatched. Nice work if you
can get it. (Brian Donaldson)
EAST EUROPEAN DRAMA About The Dreams . . .
Glasgow: Citizens’ Main Theatre, Fri
16 May only.
One of the more exotic imports for lvlayfest this year is The Theatre Association, who hail from Partizanske, a small town in the Slovak Republic. Their latest show, About The Dreams, Wings And Hurricane Dog touches down in Glasgow for the briefest of one-night stands — though there Will be two performanes.
Adapted by the directors, Jozef KraSUla and Ivan Hanzlik, from a stOry by Dusan Dusek, the play centres on two Wistful and imaginative young men, As both lament the loss of their loved ones, they overcome their gloomy yearnings by dreaming,
aSpiring and conspiring, until together Sweet dreams: The Theatre Association of
they foster an uplifting mood. Performed at venues from Japan to
MGXICO. the play has been described as refreshing and warm-hearted — in contast 10 the angst-filled scenarios that feature in much east European theatre 'The World of Dusek has long been enchanting me,’ says Josef Krasula. It's an enchantment he wants us to share. (Andrew Burnet)
BIOGRAPHICAL DRAMA Song At Sunset
Glasgow: Citizen's Theatre, Tue 20/Thurs 22/Sat 24 May.
Most girls put their dad on a pedestal. But Shivaun O’Casey has more reason than most to pay tribute to hers. The daughter of Irish playwright Sean O’Casey, Shivaun has created her own eulogy, Song At Sunset, which weaves together a patchwork of his works with personal letters and tapes he made during the last years of his life.
Creating a many-hired portrait of the controversial writer, Shivaun was keen to present a piece which showed the many influences that shaped her dad's work. It’s far from a straightforward monologue: solo performer Niall Buggy (a seasoned O’Casey player) dons no less than 28 caps. It was after Shivaun directed Buggy in a 1991 production of O'Casey’sThe Shadow Of A Gunman that they began putting the show together.
’lt wasn’t a purging thing at all,’ asserts Shivaun. ‘It was Just something I’d had on my mind, that I wanted to write about Sean in my own lifetime.’ Based around the recordings he made IUSI before his death, when clinically blind, the show exposes O’Casey's love of song, his preoccupations as an active socialist, his Views on the futility Of war and his experience of liying and working in Ireland, where, he claimed, yOu are forced to 'wear a fig-leaf on your lips’ - a reference to the censorship that lingers on today.
It was O’Casey's outspokenness on such Subjects that led to the
Lifting the fig-leaf: Niall Buggy as Sean O'Casey
controversy which dogged much of his career, in particular his run-in with WB. Yeats over The Silver Tassie which ultimately resulted in his departure from Ireland.
’If anything, I now respect him even more after domg this,’ says Shivaun, 'He didn’t say anything to save his arse or make a lot of money, in fact he said a lot of things that damaged him but he felt he had to.’
Almost every word in the script is O’Casey’s own, and Shivaun feels confident that the overall picture, which is both humorous and pOignant, is a pretty accurate one. 'A lot of what he had to say is very pertinent politically now,’ she claims, ’wrth the election going on at the moment and wrth the rise of nationalist parties in Paris, Germany and the USA.’
by Phyllis Nagy freely adapted from the iimel l\\ Nathaniel llaixthiii'iii-
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lIt'Z’t’l' previously staged in Hit’ UK...
Thurs 15th - Sat 17th May Tues 20th - Sat 24th May at 7.30pm'ilC‘Kl-I’l'8 £5 / £2.50
Ticket Centre (ll-ll 287 55! I
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98 Ingram Street Glasgow
0141 552 3489
l6~29 May 1997 THELIST 21