Green Tea Auditions

September 3, 2016 | By | 1 Reply More

Blazing Hyena to stage Le Fanu adaptation

Edinburgh grass-roots theatre company Blazing Hyena has put out a casting call for Sophie Good’s Green Tea which it is to stage in November 2016.

This is an an adaptation of the horror story by the famed Victoria writer of gothic fiction, J. Sheridan Le Fanu. Good, who is part of the Village Pub Theatre writers collective, has reimagined it as a three-hander and transposed it to modern day Edinburgh.

Sophie Good. Who is part of the Village Pub Theatre writers collective. Photo: Sophie Good

Sophie Good. Who is part of the Village Pub Theatre writers collective. Photo: Sophie Good

Blazing Hyena is looking for notes of interest in auditioning for the play by noon on Wednesday 7 September. The auditions to take place in Edinburgh on the evening of Tuesday 13 September. The production will be a profit share on a five night run in either the second or third week of November.

The original short story is a study of demonic possession and madness in which a parish priest is followed around by a monkey which only he can see, and which has “only one peculiarity – a character of malignity, unfathomable malignity”. So much so, that it eventually drives the priest, a gentle man, to suicide.

In Good’s script, the main character, James, is now an academic. He describes through a series of monologues how he first met the monkey and how it now follows him around and has caused him to descend into madness.

disturbance

James’ narrative is interwoven with the perspective of his partner Andy, who cannot see the monkey. James describes various incidents including an important conference in which the monkey causes so much disturbance he can’t deliver his lecture.

Eventually the monkey makes James destroy all of his research and drives him to suicide. Andy is left haunted by his presence in a way which echoes James and the monkey.

According to Blazing Hyena: “It is a strong timeless story about mental illness and how it manifests itself, and how society fails to support people. The absurdity and darkness of the monkey spectre is really strong and theatrical.”

Casting

James – male, playing age 25-35, any ethnicity. An early career PhD student at Edinburgh University and studies controversial stem cell treatments. He is driven by his work and can go through obsessive phases. He considers himself to be ultimately a very rational person and is therefore convinced that the monkey spectre is real, even though no one else can see him.

Andy – male, playing age 25-35, any ethnicity. Works as a designer. He has been living with James for a couple of years. He is less career driven than James but loves and respects James’ work. He has little experience of depression or mental illness and therefore struggles to understand what James is going through.

Monkey – any gender, age and ethnicity. Must have good physical theatre and/or dance skills. The monkey is sometimes playful and sometimes evil. It is always present on stage and is James’ ever faithful companion.

Rehearsals and Performance – Rehearsals will take place once or twice weekly throughout September (once cast) and October. The performance will run for five nights in November. Preliminary dates are 8th-12th or 15th-19th November 2016.

Anyone interested in auditioning should send a CV and headshot to jack.blazinghyena@gmail.com by 12 noon on Wednesday 7th September 2016, indicating which role they would like to audition for. Anyone asked to audition will receive some material to look over and the audition venue by 17:00 on Friday 9th September 2016.

Sheridan Le Fanu. Image: Pinterest

Sheridan Le Fanu. Image: Pinterest

Sheridan Le Fanu’s Green Tea was originally published as one of five short stories in the 1872 collection: In A Glass Darkly. The full text is available here: http://gaslight.mtroyal.ca/lfanumen.htm

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