Blog II of IV on the recent two day residency focusing on Murray Lachlan Young’s new script – BURLESQUE
(From L to R Mary Woodvine, Jerome Wright, Kirsty Osmon. Photo by Kate Mount)
Thursday afternoon and now the work really starts. ‘To begin at the beginning’ writes Dylan Thomas in probably the most famous verse play of them all – and its clearly Paul’s mantra. With the actors as willing collaborators and contributors he delves deep into the text.
At almost every line we stop. Why?, whats driving you? Why are you doing that? Does that work?
Very quickly a rhythm is established. A section is read. Paul reads it back, a discussion ensues. Sometimes an answer is reached. A line cut – amends suggested. Murray types furiously. Other times an issue or question noted. Then we start again. No textual stone is left un-turned.
‘Its not because this is a bad text’ declares Paul with a wave of his glasses reminiscent of David Dimbleby. ‘Its precisely because this is a good text that we can get into this level of detail. And by the time we get to the Drill Hall (a rehearsed reading on the 19/4) this will be a bloody good text. Thats what we’re doing here.’
Murray goes out into the spring sunshine to re write a section whilst the textual post mortem continues.
By the end of the day much has been achieved. One of the background characters has been despatched to the knackers yard, theres been quite a few cuts and quite a few additions. Most importantly though the characters are leaping off the page and as the cast head back to Totnes for curry Paul and Murray get down to an evening of notes and re writes.
Read Blog I on the residency – A Script Arrives here
The development process of Burlesque is supported by Arts Council South West and partners Beaford Arts, Dartington and the Works.