Edinburgh Showcase 2017: ‘Seagulls’ by VOLCANO THEATRE COMPANY

Volcano are based in Wales in Swansea and we’ve
been making theatre for more than twenty years. My sex is angry. Furious, just furious. I feel you growing in my belly,
I part my lips to speak. We’re going to be presenting our version of
Chekhov’s ‘The Seagulls’ in a disused church. The themes of Chekhov are legendary and affect
us all in some ways because we all want to escape, but we’re all dragged down by our parents,
our friends, society, who ultimately all destroy us because the process of renewal and change
for individuals and society is very difficult, so Chekhov is essentially
about this, it’s about repression but also the coming change in Russian society. So what we wanted to do with our ‘Seagulls’
in Edinburgh and when we made it originally was to put everything that was
on the inside on the outside. What’s that? It’s a seagull, obviously. The first thing we felt was wood and the kind of pine-ish,
Swedish, Finnish, Russian, medieval-ness of the text, the sense that wood was really important
and somehow is really important for Chekhov, you know, if you think
about ‘The Cherry Orchard’, so that was our first point of reference, like ‘what is everything?’
so everything had to be wood, the colour, and then the lake came into view, so everything Camilla
gave us, the designer, I think for ‘Seagulls’ was useable. The playing style is entirely modern so what people will see when they come
to Edinburgh and the Showcase is the costumes are modern, all of the music score ranges from
The Clash to The Durutti Column so it’s all contemporary music, which supports the idea that you’re watching
something which isn’t like a remake of a classic. I feel like it’s a destruction of the the classic ‘Seagulls’ but somehow in the end you go ‘oh yeah, actually
they really caught something totally in the text’. If all goes well we’ll see each other next summer. In the last five years Volcano has specialised in
using unconventional spaces to make creative work, so we wanted to make the first
half of the show super intense so that audience are all on three sides and they’re
laughing and enjoying the sort of painful tragedy. After that, there’s a great surprise moment
I think, when this huge white gauze is drawn down and suddenly it reveals this expanse of water and
that’s a real, I think for some members of the audience, that’s a super surprise, so much so that when we did
it originally someone came out of the audience and put their hand in and waved it around in the water, as if they couldn’t believe it really was water.


Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *