So I saw a short play last night, Gone written by Glyn Cannon and directed by Jas Kadar, which was part of the 3rd year directors season playing at St Mary’s University College at the moment. Cannon’s play is a modern adaptation of Sophocles’ Antigone set in Blair’s Britain as opposed to Thebes of 442BC and has been further adapted by Kadar set in Arabic nations.
The piece was played with much attack and a sense of high tension right from the first word thus capturing the audience immediately. The performance focuses on the tussle of status between the two main characters, Creon (Giuseppe Castagna), the new king of the state and Antigone (Rachel Barratt), the sister of the slain two brothers. Staged in the round suits the piece well lending to the audience often being challenged as to which side to take of the highly motivating political words of Creon and the deeply emotional grieving portrayed by Antigone.
As the performance plays out, the cast do not let the ball drop and the audience are forced to bear the witness of the slippery slope that Creon finds himself on. The overall ensemble works extremely hard as each character contributes to every scene which in turn play a very important role in this story. There were a couple of ‘interesting’ directorial choices where the characters were playing off-stage out of the light. Necessary? Perhaps not.
Although somewhat at times a feeling of out-of-touch with content (as so often Greek plays tend to), the audience still find a feeling of sympathy with the story that unfolds, namely Antigone’s version. Nevertheless, the sometimes complex plot is aided by well informed design choices of set and costume and an overall simplicity also favour this piece so highly charged with language.
So, this is what theatre should be about. A collection of well informed choices each counteracting with each other amounting to a complete piece. It is a display of how important each decision is and how it can influence the piece so much; potentially make or break. From choice of piece and casting to the simplest of things such as a pair of glasses, the audience analyse everything and through precision, success can be achieved.
Overall, I just enjoyed the piece for what it was. Even if I do analyse everything little thing that happens in front of me, it is ultimately that I should enjoy the work and that is what it should be about.