Playwright Matthew Fisher Discusses New Play, Abandoned
The debut theatre presentation from Dramatic Moose Productions, Abandoned, is set to challenge audiences of perceptions of how life could be if the United Kingdom succumbed to a terrorist invasion.
The production, written by playwright Matthew Fisher, debuts in the downstairs gallery of Cardiff’s Little Man Coffee Company in January and follows a group of survivors who have banded together. Simmering with power plays, new friendships are forged and old secrets surface when two new members join the group, despite the ever-present threat of being caught by those they oppose'.
Andy Howells recently put questions to the writer of Abandoned, Matthew Fisher.
Can you tell us a bit about Dramatic Moose Productions, how and why you have come together?
Dramatic Moose Productions is a group that provides a platform for new ideas, new writers and new actors.
We’ve all been in these theatre groups where the same people keep getting cast in the lead roles, and sometimes rightly so. But there are actors out there that keep getting overlooked, and they might be just as good, or even better than anyone thought. Not just actors, but all sorts of creative people are being over looked for various reasons. They just need to be given a chance to show off their talent. Dramatic Moose Productions was created so that these people could have a place to show the world exactly what they can do.
You've written a play, Abandoned, can you give us some background about that?
I started writing Abandoned in the summer of 2016. I always wanted to write a full-length play that didn’t have any “supporting” characters. Recently I performed in a murder mystery play, where I was the murderer, which I thoroughly enjoyed. The play had 5 suspects, and each was a main character. However, if one of these main characters were removed, the story could still move forward and make sense.
With Abandoned, however, I wanted every character to be just as important as the next. That if you took one of them out of the tale, the story would be altered drastically, or not even happen. I believe I have done this with this play, it has seven strong and very different characters, all with their own agenda and story lines, and all of whom are integral to the whole story.
Is this your first production, and how are the rehearsals coming together?
No, this isn’t my first production. In June 2016, I put together and performed a light hearted, two man play called ‘The Universe plc’. I was pleased to receive great reviews of the play which spurred me on to start writing more adventurous things, such as Abandoned. I’ve had success with my short plays and films being performed and shown around the UK and even in New York City.
With regards to the rehearsals for Abandoned, they’re coming along great. The cast have really gelled, a lot quicker than I had expected and have a real professional approach to the play. Considering there are people that are just starting out and others that have never been given chance to prove their worth with a main role, I am pleased to see that every member of the cast has been so dedicated to their character.
What type of audience is Abandoned aimed at?
Audiences who like strong characters and a good story. This is, however, the first time I’ve written something that isn’t suitable for children, due to the strong language and adult themes. As Abandoned is set in a country invaded by terrorists, we find out what happened to people’s friends and family. On top of that, we find out how the group copes with so many different types of personalities and egos.
What do you hope audiences will get from the production?
First and foremost, I want the audience leaving the play, knowing that they have seen something special, the play and the fantastic actors. I’d like the audience will go away thinking about how the things they do, affect others. The characters in Abandoned not only intertwine in the present, but their actions in the past also have affected some of the other characters with them knowing.
One of the big themes throughout the play is how life was before the invasion, so I want people to go away appreciating what they have, because it could all change so suddenly.
Can you tell us a little about the venue you'll be performing at and what audiences can expect?
The venue is the downstairs Gallery in The Little Man Coffee Company on Bridge Street, next to the Admiral building. They have been a frequent home for grass roots and fringe theatre events.
With Abandoned being performed in an intimate space, the audience will be able to feel the emotions the characters are going through, as well as the dread of being caught.
When is the production on and how can people get tickets?
Abandoned will be performed from Thursday January 25 until Saturday January 27 2018.
You can get tickets via EventBrite.co.uk or you can follow the link on our Facebook event
Tickets are £9, and that includes a free Beer! Or Cake and Coffee
For further details on Dramatic Moose Productions visit www.facebook.com/DramaticMooseProductions