Returning by very popular demand are three stunning new plays by award-winning writer James Phillips, with original music written and performed by Rosabella Gregory.
A haunting journey fusing drama and live music.
What happens when someone tells you that you’re the answer to the riddle of life?
What happens when a stranger in Starbucks gives you something that will change your world forever?
What happens if the world starts to fall asleep, hour by hour?
Another chance to join singer songwriter Rosabella Gregory with Daphne Alexander, Louisa Clein and Sarah Quintrell for three magical new short plays by acclaimed writer James Phillips.
James Phillips and Daphne Alexander recently took time to answer a few questions about City Stories.
What process do you usually go through when writing new material?
Just the usual rhythm of writers I suppose… Angst, mid level despair, a day or two of muttering ‘I hate, hate, hate writing’ and then that happy moment when all the windows align and you can suddenly see a journey’s end.
What was the inspiration behind these three stories?
London. An unspoken, magical London. The streets and buses and secret places of London, and the people who live their lives here.
What can you tell us about each of these short plays?
I can tell you that they’re all set in London. That they’re all love stories, or stories about the varieties of love and how it might save us. I can say that I wanted to write something with magic in it, that I wanted to write without constraint and in a different way to The Rubenstein Kiss or Hidden in the Sand. I can tell you they are full of music.
The music for the plays is written and performed by Rosabella Gregory. How does this process get developed?
I love working with Rosabella. She’s brilliant. And an incredible performer too. I listened to her stuff over and over when I was planning the show, and chose some of her existing music that I wanted to be part of City Stories. To that we’ve added new material made specifically for the show.
These are short plays, are they fully developed?
Absolutely. Each one is completely developed and realised within itself, but each story also bounces off all the others and suggests a whole. We’re creating a magical world, a magical London, filled with music and thoughts of love. This being said City Stories is a project that’s growing, so after these four performances we’ll be back next year with more stories, still magical, still revealing a concealed London and still woven with Rosabella’s music.
What is your next project?
A new play about the designer Alexander McQueen and then The White Whale a radical, site specific adaptation of Moby Dick for the brilliant Slung Low.
You have recently completed Hidden in the Sand at Trafalgar Studios. What are your underlying thoughts having played the part of Sophia, and now the run has concluded?
Sophia will always be in my heart. She was a challenge and an inspiration. I am sure I will look back in years to come and feel that playing her was a massive breakthrough for me both as a person and an actress.
What can you tell us about your character in City Stories and how she fits into the storyline?
I play Audrey, the third main female storyteller of City Stories. Audrey is faced with a set of extraordinary circumstances. She is the last person conscious in a world that is slowly falling asleep and, all alone in an empty London, she has 16 days to find the antidote… It is a thrilling adventure, moving and disturbing in equal measure.
St James Theatre is an intimate venue, how do you feel about performing ‘up-close’ with the audience?
As with Trafalgar Studios, where we performed Hidden in the Sand, St James’ Studio is a very intimate space. I love such small theatre spaces – feeling close to the audience and being able to communicate with them in this very personal way. It feels like they are part of the story and that by the end they are my friends and co-conspirators.
What are you excited most about being in this production?
I genuinely look forward to sharing these truly mesmerising tales with the audience. Also, the music is breathtaking, written and performed by a very talented musician called Rosabella Gregory.
Why should everyone get along to see City Stories?
City Stories are three magical tales about London. I think Londoners would love them! Both the music and the writing are beautiful and otherworldly and I truly feel that the audiences will be transported and inspired. Also, it’s in a cabaret space so you can enjoy a bottle of wine at your table!
What’s next for you?
Much, much more theatre I hope!
City Stories is at St James Theatre 14th to 16th November 2013
Thursday 14th and Friday 15th November 8.00pm
Saturday 16th November 3.00pm and 8.00pm
Online Bookings at https://www.stjamestheatre.co.uk
Ticket Prices: Studio £15.00, Studio Standing £10.00
Box Office on 0844 264 2140.
Sunday 10th November 2013