Welcome to the SUTCo Spotlight!
The Ghost Light begins tonight! I sat down with Megan (Writer/Director), Meredith (Producer), and Nick (Production Manager) to discuss the upcoming show.
George: Hey guys, thanks for coming down! Where did the inspiration for the Ghost Light come and how did it change over time?
Megan: I was procrastinating some months ago and ended up looking at theatre traditions, where I found out that many theatres leave on a 'ghost light' for ghosts to perform their plays at night. I thought this was really cute, and wanted to see a play about that, but forgot for a while. When proposals came around again I remembered, and decided to use this idea to write a play to put forward. I created two of the characters in GCSE drama (and they have since featured in four plays already!) and as they were ghosts they had to go in - and after figuring out the other characters I built it from there. In the read-through and subsequent rehearsals all the cast and crew have added offhand jokes which often we decided to keep, and so it has slowly changed throughout - and due to the semi-improvised parts, it will continue to change every night!
George: Meredith, how have you found producing?
Meredith: This is actually my second time producing! I was producer for a performance of Dracula last semester, which had the advantage of being a big name and very well known, but it was for an entirely new theatre company we'd just set up whereas this time it's been good to be for a company that some of the public and a lot of people round uni have heard of and one with a proper support network for the producers. I've done a lot of marketing stuff in the past too so that's been very helpful.
George: And what about The Ghost Light in particular has been interesting from a producer's perspective?
Meredith: This show has been really interesting to produce because it's new writing and something a little bit different as well. Trying to find the best way to market a semi-improvised play within a play about ghosts with some number of spoons has been a challenge, but it's such a fun show and I think getting that across has been the main thing and a lot of people seem to be focused on that which is good.
George: Nick, how have you found the technical aspect of the ghost light? What experience have you taken from previously prod managing?
Nick: Technically this show has given me the opportunity to try some new ideas and they have mostly come off really well. It’s really nice to work with such a small tech team, especially one as close as this one. I have really enjoyed how open this show is to ridiculous tech ideas and I don’t think there has been a single time where we have suggested something and the reply has been no!
The last time I production managed, we also went pretty mad with tech - this time I have learned not to use 4 different projectors! Something I wish I had realised for this time is that it is physically impossible to meet all of the tech team at once (even when you only have 8 people!)
George: How's the rehearsal process been?
Meredith: It's been such an exciting rehearsal process, watching all the characters really come to life in such a short time and the little bits of flair all the cast and crew bring to their roles.
Megan: Yeah, rehearsals have been very busy, but also very fun - much silliness has been had by all, and the cast have been fantastic at dealing with the short time-span.
George: Of course, you don't want to give anything away, but... anything to look out for?
Nick: Watch out for a just a few spoons, a slightly unusual boat and a small amount of salt.
Meredith: I'd say definitely look out for Gary - I can't give any more away, but you'll know what I mean when you see it!
Megan: I recommend looking out for four figures worth of spoons, three (not one but three!) stunt double bears, and an extra ghost.....