On The Ground with The Good Earth

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My name is Shannon and I am currently an ‘on the ground promoter’ working on Motherlode’s The Good Earth. That means that I am helping to spread the word to as many people as possible about this show which tours Wales in September.

Motherlode’s tagline is Tireless New Theatre, Made in Wales.  I saw the last run of rehearsals for ‘The Good Earth’ at Park & Dare Theatre in Treorchy last week. I feel extremely lucky to be working to engage people in the Cardiff area and to have got the chance to watch the performance just before it went on tour to New York. I’m delighted to help spread the word about this production; the themes that it touches on evokes awareness on what has affected Wales as a country in the past and its reaction to moments of hardship. It is an important message of strength and unity, especially during a time when we seem to be so divided.

The Good Earth’ echoes concerns over the threat to the Welsh identity and community with its close relation to the Aberfan and Tryweryn tragedies. The play made me feel nostalgic about situations I’ve never personally experienced, and empathetic for the characters’ cause to maintain the integrity of their way of life. It reminded me of Wales’s role in modern Britain, and how drastically that has developed over the years. It was the backlash against apathetic and unjust authorities that helped to fuel the surge of Welsh nationalism that we see today.

The singing, though not appearing to be its fundamental feature, significantly intensified the mood of the play. It had a meditative effect. Kudos to the actors for managing to convey the emotions of deeply relevant issues in many Welsh communities. I am so excited to see the show alongside a Welsh audience when it returns from NYC.

Further information on The Good Earth 2016

Mermaid – a review of the Sherman Theatre production.

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Polly Teale’s tale of an alluringly dark and twisted fantasy was brought on stage, with a unique intertwining of the fragile existence of both above and below the ocean through naivety, desire and love, whilst maintaining its signature theme of gripping sinfulness.

What started as a seemingly ordinary play, it developed to be anything but so. Mermaid will stay with you long after it  finishes.

The dialogue was especially captivating. It somehow complemented the eerie and beautiful setting, which was versatile in virtually all of the scenes in the play. The actors were natural to their characters, each distinct, vibrant, but wholly credible in their actions and movements.

The play raises philosophical questions: is it better to remain blissfully ignorant in safety, or follow in the in pursuit of happiness, but be simultaneously exposed to disillusion and regret? Will we ever be satisfied with what we have? Could there really be life that we are unaware of, or is it just merely subject to our futile imaginations?

It is left to the audience to decide.

In summary, Hans Christian Anderson would be proud.