We’re now back from London and basking in the audience responses to our run at the Kings Head Theatre. It’s January, so the audiences were understandably small, but perfectly formed.
“Brilliant!” “Loved it!” “beautifully performed” “You recognise yourself in the characters” “Fantastic writing” “a wonderfully honest, comical and loveable script, performed by an amazing group of actors”
And a favourite with Suse Crosby: “It’s like the Peep Show meets Pinter, without the pauses.”
We shared our set with “Outlying Islands” so we were faced with the challenge of performing on mud. So, the set became ‘the garden’ in a new house where they were getting quotes for how best to landscape it! In a couple of hours we had adapted the beginning of the script to take into account the setting – which means, as is true of live theatre, you can go and see a show many times and each time see a slightly different play. It kept things fresh for both the audience and actors which is always a good thing.
So we say farewell to London – for now, and after a brief rest, we will be planning the creative future. Thank you everyone involved in this production, thank you all at the Kings Head Theatre, and thank you to the fabulous audiences that made performing this so much fun.
We are still appealing for funds for this run, if you are feeling generous please donate to our Crowdfunding page – and hopefully we will have future funds to go further afield and / or tour.
When Susanne Crosby wrote and put on “Waiting for Curry” in the Brighton Fringe Festival, she had no idea that someone from the Kings Head Theatre in London would come to see it. The play was a surprise hit at the Festival earlier this year, enjoyed by audiences and critics alike, so much so that she was asked to put on extra performances.
“I was bowled over by the response during the Fringe” says Brighton resident Susanne who also plays one of the four characters in the play. “People really loved it. It’s amazing to have such great feedback from the audience.” The one act play is about two couples meeting up to have a take-away together, and while they wait for the Curry of the title, they enjoy rather too much wine and relax a little too much, which leads to all sorts of skeletons coming out of closets that perhaps should stay buried.
“It’s a little family comedy drama that packs a punch” says Susanne who founded Twilight Theatre to specialise in new and innovative work. “I’m interested in real lives, not being quirky or clever for the sake of it. What spoke to people about the play is that they recognised the situation these couples are in, and many came and spoke to me after the show about similar things that they had experienced.”
In today’s world where people have different relationships through their lives and often stay friends with their ex partners, attitudes towards each others’ past relationships can be tricky. “People have all sorts of insecurities, and sometimes jealousy of the past can destroy the present. Also, sometimes we look back on point in the past with such rose tinted glasses, and wishing we’d still been with someone else, which can also be so destructive” says Susanne.
Susanne has written 16 plays over the last 20 years, 13 of which have been performed to popular and critical success all over Sussex. Her play “Magpies” won a national award with the Royal Project in 2010. “Brighton is such a wonderful vibrant place to live and be creative, and performing in London is a dream come true” she says. “I always hoped more people would notice and enjoy my stories.” And when she received an invitation from the Kings Head Theatre for Twilight Theatre to put “Waiting for Curry” on there in January she was “ecstatic”. The rest of the cast were equally excited to be taking this hit to a prestigious London theatre whose reputation precedes it. “I was going over my lines again on Christmas Day” says Susanne, “but I was so excited!”
“Waiting for Curry” plays at the Kings Head Theatre 13 and 14 January 2019 7.00-8.00 pm. Tickets are available from the Theatre box office: 0207 226 8561 and on the website www.kingsheadtheatre.com.
So we’re very excited about our next play, “Waiting for Curry”, which opens on 14 May and runs until 20 May, as part of the Brighton Fringe Festival.
This play premiered at the Hove Grown Festival in 2017 for two nights and was a big hit (see “Waiting for Curry” previous productions tab). It was sold out with people queuing for returns on the last night and people turned away because there was no room. Fringe Review called it “an excellent play” and classed it as “Highly Recommended”. So this year, with the support of the lovely people at Sweet Venues, we have a longer run in the hope that everyone who wants to see it can get in!
One of the bits of feedback we received over the premiere was that when the audience were packed out, it was harder for people at the back to see what was going on when the characters were sitting down. So, we have a new set. It’s set in two of the four character’s home, so we’ve imagined a breakfast bar situation, where everyone is on higher breakfast bar stools in advance of the curry that they are waiting to take delivery of. We know this staging will make sure that everyone, no matter where you sit, will be able to see everything.
But putting this together has not been without its challenges! All four of the original cast were asked to reprise their roles for this production and all of them agreed. However, with a seven night run, and a lot of rehearsals scheduled, it was becoming increasingly difficult for the two actresses to be part of it, due to family and other commitments. Then one of the actresses landed a role in a shorter run play but one that has the likelihood of becoming mainstream in West End – so both actresses in the end had to sadly pull out. Then, just before rehearsals were due to start, it was clear from being committed to 4 other productions, one of the original male members of the cast would not be able to perform in this either. We miss them and wish them all the luck in the world for their next ventures and no doubt (unless superstardom awaits) we will be working with them again.
Did this send us into a panic? Well, perhaps a little. But there brilliant thing about Twilight Theatre is the amount of talented actors and actresses that we already know and love, ones we know would be perfect for the roles, ones we can call on to ask could they possibly be available for a 7 night run for a brilliant play in the middle of the Brighton Fringe? Yes was the answer. With the writer / director filling the last remaining female role, cast, with 5 weeks to opening night, was set.
Of course with the writer / director (who is also an actress) now being in the play, someone else had to be brought in to co-direct, for perspective and assistance with portraying the overall vision. This is in the shape of the writer / director’s husband, himself an actor / writer / director, and this team is putting together a superb show with very talented actors.
Although as Susanne said: “It’s very odd being directed by your husband to play the role of another man’s wife…”