|Andy Burse as Egor Bulychev. All photos by Robert Workman.|
I'm more than happy to admit the Teutonic influence. After all, Bruford calls itself "London's international drama school", I'm a Visiting Professor and I run an intercultural theatre company - it would seem logical enough that we should look beyond the British approach to naturalism. Thomas Ostermeier's re-workings of Ibsen were very much in my mind as I started to think through Gorky's text - he deliberately creates a hyper-real contemporary world in which to locate these pieces, recovering the social and political radicalism that made them so controversial in the first place. I was also thinking about Simon Stone's version of The Wild Duck for Belvoir (recently filmed as The Daughter), which, although its approach is psychological rather than social and political, is a lesson in how form can be altered as a way of giving a piece the feel of contemporary narrative. However, I suspect that even these productions, and certainly the ones cited by Lawson, are much closer than our Gorky was to what the writer had expected to see on stage. It is one thing to modernise a play, either through a change of context or through a structural shift. It is quite another to do both, in a deliberate attempt to turn the original inside out. We deliberately renounced what Lawson called "absolute fidelity to what a playwright's intentions are perceived to be."
|Austin Caley as Stefan, Katie Trump as Varya|
|Gloria Obianyo as Nkolika, Andro Crespo as Pedro, Celeste Collier as Georgie|
|Gloria Obianyo as Nkolika|
|Kizzy Dunn as Shura|
|Final scene - The Revolution|