Love, cheese and Chekhov will characterise the year’s theatre. Words: Steve Cramer
Dundee Rep's The Seagull
t seems to me that rrruch of the year ahead rn the theatre is a love thang.
Several pieces are rn the busrrress of answerrng Bacharach's question:
'What do you get when you fall rn love?’ One thrrrg you can get is pregnant. and that's the startrrrg point for the new play from Grid Iron. Fermentation. Operrrrrg rn February rt tells the story of a young woman who falls pregnant to a frre—eater‘. Over a sweltering surrrrrrer. durrrrg a refuse strike rn an unknown crty. the grrl develops a passrorr for varrous forrrrs of cheese and a relationship wrth a clreeserrrorrger. The corrrparry prorrrrses a play filled with drearrr. rrrytlr and erotrcrsrrr from drrector Ben Harrison's adaptation of an obs‘Cure French novel by one Angelrca Jacob. Harrrson and co-drrector Judith Doherty have presrded over sorrre of the most innovative theatre of the last five years rn Scotland. rrrcludrrrg three Frrrrge Frrsts rn The Bloody Chamber. Gargantua and Deckv Does A Bronco. Expect no less here.
Love rs also the recurrent theme of Chekhosz work. and three prorrrrsirrg productions on this subject are the Crtr/ens' Theatre's The Cherry Orchard in March. theatre babel's Uncle Vanya. tourrng from late April. and Benchtours' The Cherry Orchard tourrng from June. Babel's reputation for bringing accessible productions of the classics to Scottish audiences shOuId ensure another thrrllrrrg evenrng. Berrchtours has garnered Gerry Mulgrew as drrector for its productrorr. The reputation of the man who produced such corrsrsterrt guality wrth Comrrrunrcado rerrrarrrs undrrrrrnrshed. The Cit/ show vvrll be drrected by Phrlrp Prowse. hrs first Chekhov rrr frfteen years. Dundee Rep wrll also be tourrrrg rts radrc'rl versron of The Seagull.
Love of a rrrore unorthodox varrety was drsplayed rn Andrea Dunbar's Rita. Sue And Bob. Too. the 1982 story of a rrrenage a trors between the council— housedwelling title characters. Due at Edrrrbur'gh's Traverse rn February. Max StaffordClark's productrorr for Out Of Jorrrt works rn a double brll wrth Robin Soarrres' A State Affair. wlrrclr returns to the sarrre estate two decades later. In the same rrronth and venue. LookOut's Singles Night wrll present four short plays about not so rrruclr love as the lack of rt. ln Aprrl Dundee Bep wrll present an earthrer versron of love rn Pants. the thrrd of Forbes Masson's trilogy of black corrrtxlres. after SW and Mince.
But rt's not all about love. Back at the Traverse rn March. Douglas Max.ve|l's Helmet. a Jornt productrorr betwtxm Parnes Plough and the Traverse. explores the relatrorrslrrp between a corrrputer games salesman and a young boy. At least I hope Its not about love. The author of Our Bad Magnet and D(X;kv Does A Bronco and former Traverse drrector John Trffarry present a cornbrrratron to whet any theatr'rxroer's appetrte.
In Aprrl Suspect Culture will be premrerrng a devrsed show at the Tron for tOurrrrg. Lament. wrth Graham Eatouglr and Davrd Grerg corrrbrrrrng to provrde a stop; on the subject of loss and grref. Nrcola McCartney rs workrrrg wrth 7:84 rn presentrng a prece on refugees. Cave Dwellers. also to open rn March. while Kenn; Ireland's return to hrs days wrth l~loward Barker's Wrestlrng School with Victory rn May. and the Scottrsh premrere of Sarah Kane's Blasted at the Crtr/ens' rn March also present fascrrratrrrg prospects. Borlerhouse wrll present a rrrultrrrredra event. The Running Girl. tourrrrg from Glasgow's Tl'lllll‘f/H‘, rr‘. June. But thrs year's werrd l( lea award must surely go to Fdrnburgh's Gatex'ray. where lrvrne Welsh wrll be presenting hrs rrrusrcal Blackpool. Weird. but desperater appealrng. srrrce the events of the play are alluded to rrr Welslr's brrllrant (E/r/e. seen recently at the ()rtr/ens'.
24 THE LIST -'- ' ' ,‘a' ."
New Territories‘ O Vertigo Danse
If there’s an artform, there’s a festival. Words: Mark Fisher, Maureen Ellis and Louisa Pearson
ith Celtic Connections (16 Jan—3 Feb) out of the way. Glasgow will clear the decks for New Territories (13 Feb—1 6 Mar). a fusion of the National Review of Live Art and New Moves. featuring Wim Vandekeybus.
O Vertigo Danse and Station House Opera. The Edinburgh International
Science Festival (5—16 Apr) gets controversial with Richard Dawkins. author of The Selfish Gene and Kevin Warwick. part-man. part-machine. Edinburgh's Children’s
International Theatre Festival (27 May—5 Jun) will bring companies from Denmark. Switzerland and the US as well as Glasgow's TAG with Dr Korczak's Example (pictured top right).
Imbolc at the beginning of February gives a taster for the pagan fire and
drumming extravaganza of Beltane (Calton Hill. Edinburgh. 30 Apr). Lughnasadh marks the full moon of August. before the summer's end celebration Samhuinn
(Royal Mile. Edinburgh. 31 Oct) . . . Pride Scotland will ambitiously raise the
profile of gays and lesbian across the whole country (7—15 Jun) . . . And it's year
four for Scotland's fashion festival. Intervention. at Glasgow's Arches (Jun). Glasgow has three new festivals: City Of Love (9—25 Feb). a tribute to St
Valentine. the Arches Theatre Festival (Mar). showcasing Scottish work. and
the Carlsberg Glasgow Comedy Festival (12—16 Jun). It'll be year two for TripTych (26—28 Apr). the Cutting-edge music festival (also in Edinburgh). and Free Radicals (Oct). the festival of musical experimentation at the CCA.
Other Glasgow regulars include the West End Festival (15—30 Jun). Glasgay (Oct). the Glasgow Jazz Festival (28 Jun—7 Jul) and Gig on the Green (24—25 Aug). And there'll be more music in Kinross at T in the Park (13—14 Jul) and rrr the capital at the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival (26 Jul—4 Aug) and at T on
the Fringe (4—26 Aug).
Before we get to the Edinburgh International Film Festival (14—25 Aug). the organisation will run a seven-film showcase at the Edinburgh Filmhouse and the GFT. Glasgow (6—22 Mar). Centrepiece of its August programme will be a twelve- filrrr Kon Ichikawa retrospective. The Edinburgh International Festival (1 1—31