Plymouth Marjon University BA (Hons) Acting students are not allowing lockdown to close the curtain on their final performance. Instead, they will perform it online later this month.
Usually at this time of year, the third year degree students would be touring their production across England to theatres and arts centres, playing to new audiences each night. However, when lockdown measures were announced, the rehearsals for the current production of Caryl Churchill's play Love and Information were put on hold as theatres cancelled their bookings.
It looked as though the performance wouldn’t happen, but in the grand tradition of the theatre, the show must go on...
And so the students, under the watchful eye of play director Martin Harvey, will present a live-streamed YouTube performance over two nights, on Thursday and Friday, 14-15 May.
Harvey, who has been rehearsing with the students since March, admitted he didn’t want all their hard work to go to waste, so rehearsals soon moved online which provided a challenge for everyone, including the set designer.
He said: “The work is truly collaborative with actors responding to each other, the production designer has been on hand throughout and has been contributing more than just a visual landscape, and the technical director has really pushed the boundaries in terms of what we thought was possible.”
Marjon lecturer Judy Preston said: "The Acting degree is modelled on the industry. The staff are all still active practitioners and they aim to give students a realistic experience of all aspects of the profession and this is just one example of how we are replicating what is happening in our industry at the moment.
"Theatres are thinking differently and will have to change the way they connect with audiences as social distancing continues.”
The theme of the play is appropriate to the times we are living in; it deals with connections, dislocations, and our attempt to understand ourselves and the world around us.
You can watch the performance by signing up to Eventbrite where you will receive a link to YouTube. Tickets are free and performances will commence at 7:30pm on Thursday 14 and Friday 15 May. Book here via Eventbrite.
Find out more about Plymouth Marjon University’s Acting course.