Two very different productions took place over the past week. On Wednesday, Thursday and Friday evening Our Town provoked a variety of audience reaction with people staying to talk afterwards with cast and others about the performance which did nothing less than examine birth, life and death in a small mid-American town. The students beautifully sustained their American accents throughout and truthfully brought to life their real life characters in a set that was minimal and overseen by the master of ceremonies, the Stage Manager, masterfully played by Edmund Dean. Grace Rider and Tildy Paul played Mrs Gibbs and Mrs Webb with terrific maturity and care for their respective families. Editor Webb, played by Tom Saville, and Dr Gibbs, played by Will Wright, portrayed their loving husbands. But the play centres on the marriage of Emily Webb and George Gibbs and here we had three different Georges and Emilys to show their relationship evolving from childhood. All played their parts well, with Brandon Langridge and Sophie Grose balancing atop high wooden ladders; George Goodin and Emily Bennett sweetly falling in love at the end of their high school days; and Lily Cartmel and Harry Hopkins showing the adult George and Emily getting married beautifully and taking the story through to Emily’s early death in child birth. There were many terrific cameo roles performed with confident aplomb by Milly Cochrane as the gossip, Mrs Soames; a Simon Stimson from Seb Ebert-Thompson who managed to get progressively (and effectively) more drunk with each performance; and two wonderfully different characters from a talented Dominic Weatherby. And there was also lively and spot-on character acting from Jo-Jo Maberly, Fred van den Berg, Ash Rooke, Robbie Taylor, Taylor Ball, Harry Tor, Guy Lindley, Flo McWhirter, Flo McCausland and George Harrington.
On Monday, AS Drama and Theatre Studies were joined by the talents of Max Falconer and Tom Hampson in a promenade performance of Woyzeck by Georg Buchner in the suite of rooms that make up the Sixth Form Centre. Jimmy Rutherford played the eponymous role with conviction and just the right amount of hysteria; Natasha Coates played his unfaithful wife; Amber Pullen was the dotty and sadistic doctor; and finally Rachel Kwok and Zoe Delmer Best acted their socks off playing the grandmother and the unreliable friend. The production moved from room to room, and aslo outside for a bloody fight on the piazza, taking the audience with it on a tragic journey ending in murder and autopsy. It was ingeniously devised by cast and directors and may well be the germ of the show that takes us to another Edinburgh glory next year.
Photos will be on the website soon.