Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Hard Times: coming soon to a blog post near you

Some weeks ago I answered an appeal by the Library Theatre Company seeking bloggers to write posts for their website about the upcoming production of Charles Dickens' 'Hard Times'. In exchange for our efforts they offered the opportunity to observe a rehearsal and then a ticket to see one of the preview performances, since tickets are already hard to come by this has turned out to be quite an offer. The theatre has hired the one remaining untouched cotton mill in Manchester, Murray's Mills, and has built a series of ten sets within the mill, and the audience will follow the action as it moves around this vast stage.
So this afternoon I have spent about four hours watching the actors read and discuss, run through scenes and discuss some more, the minutiae of a particular sentence or a particular gesture, where to stand, where to move, where to look, their relationships and motivations. It sounds dull but was utterly fascinating. Now I have to gather my observations into some kind of coherent piece of writing, when it's done and is up on their website I will link to it here. Having seen a tantalising glimpse of how much work goes in to live theatre I await with eager anticipation the finished production in three weeks time.


  1. what an interesting task Martine - you are definitely the woman for the job! I look forward to reading your posts!

  2. Wow!! Good for you!!! What a fabulous way to spread the word and to be involved too!! Fanstastic!

    Yay for your new look blog! take care

  3. Oh that sounds like an exciting experience. Hard Times is one of my favourite Dickens novels (I've read it twice). Back in the late 80s or early 90s I was involved for a while in a sort of project where I also got to attend rehearsals at our theatre free, and some back-stage tours; in return we were supposed to try and get groups of people from our workplaces to go and watch plays.

  4. Cool! sorry - I expect my usual articulate and and verbose self to return in 2013. :-) Until then...Cool!


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