Brief encounter with... Amy BonsallDate: 3 May 2012
The play you are directing, Two-Headed, what is it about?
It’s a captivating play about two friends, whose lives are overshadowed by the dark events of their childhood. It follows19th century Midwestern girls, Hettie and Lavinia, from ages ten through to 50. Immersed in a religious culture and conflicted by obligations to their community, the girls have to choose between accepting their lot and rebelling against it.
What made you want to direct it?
The story of the piece was intriguing, an appalling moment in US history revealed through the reactions of two friends. It tackles some immensely difficult ‘taboo’ subjects with great dignity and it challenges the audience to look inward. I enjoy the intimacy of working with small casts and this play takes the characters through a remarkable process of growth.
Why should fringe audiences come and see Two-Headed?
(Answered by Producer- Liz McMullen) Not only will the audience be taken on a powerful journey but they just might have a chance to see a two-headed cow, if they are good and they don’t whine about it. And if they don’t see a two-headed cow, they can at least meet Hettie who has seen three two-headed things, a two-headed pup, a two-headed sheep and a two-headed snake!
Is this your first Brighton Fringe Festival Show?
Yes, it is my first show at Brighton, though not my first show. I have worked on many other productions and have been able to travel widely with my work. I think Brighton is becoming more important year on year and I am delighted to bring such a wonderful production to be a part of it.
Why does MyLovely Productions have a female artists focus?
(Answered by Producer - Liz McMullen) There are so many talented female artists in London and never enough roles! With over 12,000 actresses in London, competition is high and it can be a struggle to find strong and compelling characters to play. Just look at Shakespeare’s plays…there are usually at least 10 roles for men and maybe two or three for women. So MyLovely Productions wants to create opportunities for woman to play great and exciting roles.
For our fundraiser in March, we created a show of comedy Shakespeare scenes that we cast cross-gender, creating six roles for women to play and two for men. It was a very well received with the actresses playing iconic roles like Hamlet, Petruchio and Falstaff. This is the reason why we choose Two-Headed as our company’s first production. It’s female driven, the two characters Hettie and Lavinia are beautifully complex and real. A great challenge, and dream roles for any actress.
Two Headed can be seen at Upstairs at Three and Ten on May 7 at 3pm, May 8 and 9 at 8:30pm, May 19 at 1pm and May 20 at 1pm.
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