This semester is host to numerous events: strikes, exams and plays! Last week saw The Book Club hit the Debating Chamber in Falmer House and was met with great success. The next play; however, is The Poorly-Written Play Festival, which shall be performed from the 6th to the 8th of March.
After success of the play’s pub quiz on the 18th of February where the audience and characters got to interact for the very first time, there is a sense of excitement in the air for what is to follow next!
I was lucky enough this week to gain an insight to the The Poorly-Written Play Festival, getting to know the cast, crew and the very intense characters that will be gracing the Debating Chamber in the not too distant future. I thought it was only fair to give them a chance to introduce themselves to you, enjoy!
Loman Dexterhaven – Tom O’Reilly
Hello, I am the artistic director for this deserving, yet impecunious theatre company. My vision, intelligence and shoulders will carry this organisation to great heights. The Poorly-Written Play Festival is just one of the numerous theatrical visions I hold; however, I will be creating ‘actual’ theatre very soon. My modern interpretation of Taming of the Shrew blew the theatre critics of Staffordshire away. I am very much the leader of this group of underachieving nitwits; however, my guidance knows no bounds. With my knowledge, charm and natural good looks, there is no way I shall fail. I am Loman Dexterhaven and I have the X-factor.
Lady Bracknell – Liz Scott
I am the Lady Bracknell and it is solely due to my financial support of this theatre company that The Poorly-Written Play Festival is able to go ahead. It is in memory of my late husband, darling Branford who adored theatre, no matter how awful. We met due to my friend, well actually a second cousin, who was friends with Branford’s brother’s niece who told Branford’s cook, who was actually related to my friend due to a shared great-grandmother – oh sorry, I was not aware there was a word count for these biographies. Branford adored the theatre and, in his memory, I constructed this play festival for him with these thespians. There. The end.
Hedda – Jess Hake
I am the literary manager for this theatre company. Thanks to Loman’s guidance this operation has managed such greatness which would have been impossible without his help. How he stays so lovely despite stupid costume designers, idiotic technicians and annoying benefactors is beyond me. I support the company by evaluating the propositioned plays and then making suggestions to the rest of the team about how these plays and projects may be produced. The Poorly-Written Play Festival has been a challenge, yet the voice it has given to oppressed minorities and toilers in obscurity has been such a refreshing change from the upper class playwriting drivel I am used to. Overall, Loman has outdone himself and I couldn’t be more proud.
Stella – Rachel Nielsen
As the costumer for this company, I am in charge of the literal aesthetic of our plays. In comparison to literary nerds who fangirl over out of date professors and superior artistic directors, I am probably the best judge of plays due to my hands on experience. My approach to style ensures that whichever play is chosen shall shine under my careful curation. Being a costumer is so much more than patterns and fabrics and colours. It is about being able to make plays, no matter how poorly-written, dazzle audiences by blowing them away with the universal symbols of fashion. To summarise, I am basically the most important person here.
Eugene – Josh Talbot
Loman said we were meant to write a bit about what we do in this theatre company and how we are feeling about The Poorly-Written Play Festival in these biographies? To clarify, I am the technical director and I direct the technical aspects in this theatre company. I have very few feelings about The Poorly-Written Play Festival, it is just my job. I am hoping that there are no requests for tornadoes, floods or fires in the plays selected, as I have a very limited technical director’s budget and do not want to have to cut corners. Yup. That’s me. Eugene.
Stranger – William Greene
He is a stranger. We genuinely have no idea what he’s doing here, he just turned up and wanted his picture taken. We felt bad turning him away, so here he is.
Director– Immie Burt
It is a genuine shock that this is the first play Immie Burt has directed given the professional approach she has taken. Her sense of attack and unorthodox directing skills have crystallized her status as a noteworthy director, possibly one of the best of our times. Her many epiphanies and lamppost pictures have acted as a guide to the cast of The Poorly-Written Play Festival. Burt’s intense focus on characterization has even resulted in members of the cast occasionally unable to distinguish themselves from the characters they play. I see an Oliver award in her future.
Producer A – Tom Chester
After success in film, Chester came back to theatre to truly find himself as an artist. As well as being an understudy, Chester has proven to be highly skilled in the formation of colour coded spreadsheets. Granted, his actions have resulted in the Nokia ringtone haunting every cast member until they turn deaf – yet his success and enthusiasm as a producer puts it all into perspective. I am not sure how the cast of The Poorly-Written Play Festival shall remember him but no matter what, it shall be fondly. From his intense participation of ‘WOO HAH’ to his convincing portrayal of Stella as an understudy, is there anything this man cannot do?
Producer 1 – Catherine Kerr
In her roles as assistant director and movement director, Kerr has channeled her innate artistic energy into everyone – resulting in really intense warm-ups and sensational movement on a par with russian ballet. Kerr has made an impact on every single member of The Poorly-Written Festival Play predominantly by how to eat creme eggs. Her lasting mark in this play shall be in the form of ‘WOO HAH’, something that has been etched onto the tablet of the cast’s mind for eternity.
Links for tickets to the play can be found here. Tickets are £4.50 for members and £6.00 for non-members. Remember – 6th of March is the relaxed night!
All images sourced from The Poorly-Written Play Festival team