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Senior Play

Senior Play
Karen Smith

Senior Play - 'Earthquakes in London'

This year’s senior play was Mike Bartlett’s ‘Earthquakes in London’, a challenging snapshot of the complexities of living within a time of globalisation and technology, neatly condensed into five acts.

Premiered in the West End in 2010, the play centres on the lives and loves of three sisters, abandoned long ago by their father, a prominent climate scientist who predicts environmental apocalypse. As the three women attempt, in their own different ways, to come to terms with the fact that their father's pessimistic forecasts may be right, an opportunity presents itself for a family reconciliation.

Director of Drama Laura Blake commented:

“Written nearly a decade ago, it is interesting to consider how little progress has been made in the face of this potential catastrophe of our own making. However, I do not believe the play is about our slow march towards the inevitable, but holds us accountable for the part we each play. By drawing our attention to the intricacies of the situation, the slow and convoluted process towards a solution is highlighted, as are the dangers of complacency, apathy or ignorance.

 As ever, working with a group of young people on a project like this is a genuine privilege. The realisation, indignation and determination ignited in response to some of the issues addressed throughout the rehearsal process created a reassuring and optimistic sense of the power they possess.

As Tom says in the text “You’ve all had your whole lives to sort out the planet, and you’ve done precisely nothing... you’ll understand if I’m impatient.”

 The want to get up and get on, the drive to put themselves out into society, to make some noise and provoke a reaction is particularly strong amongst this creative and energetic cast. The need to represent tradition and impose some form of structure upon them in the role of director has at times been challenging, but they have faced the ambition of this production with humour and determination. I am excited for them to share this journey with you, and to see how they continue their journeys with the abundant passion and humanity they possess.”

Performed on three consecutive nights in the Layard Theatre in the penultimate week of term, the production involved a cast of 17 Sixth Formers plus additional pupils involved in lighting, tech and set design.  Directors Director of Drama Laura Blake and Head of Enrichment John James were assisted by Choreographer Clare Camble-Hutchins and numerous theatre staff and our thanks go to everyone involved for all their hard work in bringing this production to the Layard stage.

Photographs from the production are available to view online at Earthquakes in London


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