On Sunday 1st September the culmination of the 12 month playwrighting course led by Matt Grinter finished with a script-in-hand performance of 10 short plays. There were about 15 of us on the course and we were all invited to submit a short play or an extract of a longer play. The playwrights were assigned a director and we were invited to the rehearsals.
My rehearsal was on Saturday morning and the director was Chloe Masterton. I'd seen her excellent work on Orca at the Weston Studio at Bristol Old Vic. It was a great experience to be part of the morning's rehearsal, helping to shape the play. Chloe introduced an additional actor to help with the transitions which added an extra layer of comedy and interaction. The play is a romantic comedy set on a football terrace over the course of a season. There are multiple stories that are all about the theme of change, self-determined and imposed.
The rehearsal began with a warm-up and then I gave a bit of background to how the piece came about. It had originated from a prompt by Papatango's George who'd suggested an event is a good basis for a play because they usually have a beginning, middle and end, plus you can pick something you have good knowledge of. I picked football. I've been to quite a few matches at all levels. Using the terrace as my setting also appealed as it would restrict the space and give the actors the option to look straight at the audience.
I stayed to the Saturday night and saw Fourteen, the monodramas written by the expert class. They were filmed by students from Screenology. They were well shot, acted and written. However, all but one was quite serious which proved a challenge over the evening. On Sunday, I met some friends who came along to the show and we took our seats. My play was bumped to the end. I was quite nervous but it was great to see the plays I'd heard read through the year, performed. And to catch up with my fellow students.
My play came on just before 10pm and I felt quite nervous. However, it was a joy to see and I was pleased it generated quite a few laughs. The 3 actors were fabulous and Chloe's deft handling really brought it to life.