Scoop Launches Fourth Year of Free Outdoor TheatreDate: 3 August 2006
The Steam Industry returns to the Scoop at More London for its fourth year this summer, presenting seven weeks of free theatre in SE1. From tonight (3 August 2006) until 17 September 2006, Bertolt Brecht’s The Caucasian Chalk Circle and Cyclops!, based on Euripides’ tale, will be performed in repertory at the open air amphitheatre by City Hall, with performances taking place on Wednesdays through to Sundays.
Marking the 50th anniversary of Brecht’s death, the company revisits one of his greatest works, The Caucasian Chalk Circle, featuring Emma Stansfield (TV’s Coronation Street). The epic tale of revolution, flight, love lost and found, bravery and cowardice tackles the fate of an innocent child, abandoned by his royal mother and rescued by a servant girl. The translation is by James and Tania Stern and W H Auden, and has a newly commissioned score by Joe Fredericks.
Returning to the repertoire of the ancient Greeks, the company presents Euripides’ only surviving comedy, the family adventure, Cyclops!, in a new version by Phil Willmott. Written in 408 BC, this Odyssean adventure has never reportedly been staged in the modern world. With a mixture of actors, puppets and live original music by Elliot Davies, it recounts the adventures of the brave warrior Odysseus and his crew, as they encounter the giant one-eyed monster on their long journey home from the Trojan War. Cyclops! opens on 17 August 2006.
The company for both productions includes Duran Brown, Thea Collings, Paul Critoph, Cheryl Fergison, Joe Fredericks, Harry Gooding, Chris Greenwood, Ally Holmes, Ami Instone, Nicholas Osmond, Graham Pattenden, Nigel Richards, Dan Woods, Lucynda Wells and Matthew White.
Since Scoop’s launch in 2003, over 75,000 people have enjoyed productions including Oedipus, Agamemnon, Androcles and the Lion, The London Nativity, Children of Hercules and Treasure Island. The season is sponsored by More London, Arts Council England, Ernst & Young, Awards for All, Southwark Council, Rio Tinto, and Southwark News.
This year, the Steam Industry is collaborating with the National Youth Theatre on the productions, and running workshops and summer school activities for 16-21 year-olds. Director Phil Willmott said: “Every summer our aim is simply to give as many people as possible the chance to watch great plays, in fine productions, in the open-air, for free.”
- by Caroline Ansdell