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Topic Summary

Posted by: Rowena
« on: November 27, 2009, 09:47:19 PM »

I saw the play the other day, when Big Brum came into my school to perform it. As said above-little development of the characters throughout the play-but I do feel that each actor fitted their role well. The storyline reflects on some issues in everyday society, and I thought this was good because it might make some people relate to the play a bit more, and engage with the plot. All in all-a good performance in my opinion  ;)
Posted by: Iain Fisher
« on: November 12, 2009, 12:42:09 AM »

After the production there was a Q&A session with Edward Bond.

Contrary to my expectations, Bond was a friendly person willing to communicate.  Slightly deaf (the questions has to be repeated to him close up) he took any question and gave long answers which didn't always answer the question (for example why is the play called A Window) but were interesting.

He talked of the difference between theatre (which is entertainment and escapism) and drama (including his own plays) which is to explore and to reveal.  He compared escapism as someone in a burning house making toast.  Wheres we should be putting out the fire.

Bond has a now old fashioned (but no less valid) Marxist/so*** THIS IS SPAM MARKED FOR DELETION ***t view of society.  And a deep distrust of mainstream theatre- he mentioned a production of his Restoration where although not a single word of the play was changed, the entire meaning was still corrupted by the director.

A pleasure to listen to him.
Posted by: Iain Fisher
« on: November 12, 2009, 12:28:10 AM »

I saw the play today (and Edward Bond).

The play lasts 80 minutes, in three sections, performed without an interval.

There are three roles, Liz, Richard and Dan (the same names as the actors Liz Brown, Richard Holmes, Danny O'Grady).

The first section has Liz and her partner (Richard I think).  She is in distress but her partner is argumentative.  She has read of a woman who blinded her baby so that she could always look after it, and never let it face the harsh world.  Liza also reveals she is pregnant.  The partner doesn't believe the story of the blinding, and wants his baby aborted.  He leaves Liz alone and goes to the pub.  It is clear he will abandon Liz.

The second section has Liz's child, now 17 (Dan).  He is involved in drugs and crime and has been in a knife fight.  Liz tries to wash the blood from the wound but can't stand the sight of the blood.  The youth falls asleep, and Liz tells him (while he sleeps) the story of the baby who was blinded.  Liz takes scissors and considers blinding her sleeping son.  She doesn't, instead she goes to another room and hangs herself.

The third section has the youth in the house when his father turns up.  Initially he doesn't know it is his father.  The father wants whatever is left (clothes etc) so he can sell them to get money.  When the youth discovers it is his father he attacks his father and ties him up.  He then threatens to blind him.  The father manages to escape and the youth is left alone.

A bleak subject with no lighter moments for balance.  The play is being performed in various schools for 14-17 year olds and I think when I was at school it would have appealed to me.  This performance (for adults) was worth seeing, but I don't think the play is strong enough to enter the repertoire and be performed by other groups.  The three characters don't seem to develop, even though we see two of them over a 17 year period.  And while they are all in hopeless positions, it is hard to feel real sympathy for them because, apart from Liz, we haven't seen any emotion other than anger and dispair from the characters.  Bond also didn't reveal any insights into the environment in which the people lived- it was the view of an intelligent person's reading of newspapers.

But as I said, if you get a chance to see this production, go for it.  Despite my views above, I am glad I saw it.  And it is the second time I have seen something special at the Oval House Theatre (the first was a double bill of Yukio Mishima plays).
Posted by: Iain Fisher
« on: September 18, 2009, 04:41:21 PM »

The play will also be performed in Birmingham Repertory Company from 21-28 Oct 2009

Posted by: Iain Fisher
« on: September 17, 2009, 09:29:34 PM »

Oval House theatre in London have a new play by Edward Bond, A Window.  It is on 11-14 Nov 2009.

Described as: "A room in a high rise flat. The window overlooks the city street.
A woman reads a story in a newspaper. It shatters her world. Her hopes for herself and the child she is carrying turn to fear. She tries to explain to her partner. He will not listen: “That kid’s a curse on me. Get rid of it or I’m out.”
Years later, her partner has long since vanished and the ‘kid’ is a young man. He takes great risks to help his mother but fails – she will destroy herself. When he is finally left alone he meets his lost father in a startling confrontation."

There is also a chance to see Edward Bond in Conversation on 11 November 2009