imitating the dog, are set to bring their unique take of Ernest Hemingway's seminal First World War novel A Farewell to Arms.
To coincide with the centenary anniversary of the start of the First World War, the piece is co-produced with The Dukes, Lancaster and supported with complementary regional producing organisations, Live at LICA and Cast, Doncaster. The production plays at the Dukes prior to a UK and Italian Tour.
Based on the author's real-life experience in 1918 in Italy, A Farewell to Arms tells the story of Frederic Henry, an American ambulance driver for the Italian army and his relationship with British nurse Catherine Barkley. Against the backdrop of the war the two protagonists discover the redemptive power of love and experience the loss of innocence as they attempt to cement their relationship in a time of devastating conflict.
In this first UK stage adaptation of one of the classic novels of the twentieth century, imitating the dog will fuse video projection, stage design and original music to recreate Hemingway's powerful tale of love and the brutality of modern warfare.
Ernest Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms was published in 1929 and a year later was adapted on Broadway by Laurence Stallings. It was then subsequently made into a Oscar nominated film by Paramount Pictures in 1932 featuring Gary Cooper and then remade in 1957 with Rock Hudson and Jennifer Jones in its cast. The 1932 version of the film has just been re-released by the BFI.
Playing the central roles of Frederic Henry and Catherine Barkley, in an ensemble of six actors, will be Jude Monk McGowan and Laura Atherton. Jude Monk McGowan has just finished playing Conrad in the acclaimed Punchdrunk/National Theatre production of The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable. His other credits include Joe Wright's screen adaptation of Anna Karenina, Little Britain and Faith, Hope and Charity at Southwark Playhouse. Laura Atherton's theatre credits include the recent imitating the dog productions The Zero Hour and Six Degrees below the Horizon.
Since 1998, imitating the dog has devised performances that experiment with the role of story-telling and narrative in a contemporary theatrical context that are performed both in the UK and Internationally. The company's recent acclaimed productions have included The Zero Hour, Six Degrees below the Horizon and Hotel Methuselah, as well as co-productions with Oldham Coliseum on The Hound of the Baskervilles and earlier this year The Life and Times of Mitchell & Kenyon at the Dukes, Lancaster.
A Farewell to Arms is adapted by imitating the dog and co- directed by imitating the dog founder members Pete Brooks and Andrew Quick. The production's projection and video design is designed by fellow original founder member Simon Wainwright.
Stage design is by Laura Hopkins, lighting is provided by Andrew Crofts and the music is composed by Jeremy Peyton-Jones.
The production is supported with Grant to the Arts funding from the Arts Council of England.
The show runs at the Dukes (Lancaster) from 10 - 25 October and continues touring to the venues below:
28 October – 1 November - Cast, Doncaster
4 - 8 November - New Wolsey, Ipswich
13 - 15 November Lowry, Salford Quays
19 - 22 November Birmingham Repertory Theatre
26 - 29 November The Old Market, Brighton