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Whose Stage Is It Anyway?

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On Friday 26th June RADA TheatreVision Collective entered Swiss Cottage Library and surprised unsuspecting members of the public with a series of provocative and satirical comedies based on 1970s radical theatre scripts, reinterpreted and reimagined for 2015.

When theatre censorship ended in 1968, Camden became the centre of a radical theatre movement which challenged audiences with pressing issues like feminism, racism, homosexuality, council housing and just about everything else. This history is currently the subject of an art exhibition by local artist Dmitri Galitzine who has constructed a revolving stage and asks audiences (as well as the TheatreVision actors) to explore links between past and present.

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And so on a hot Friday afternoon, unwitting library goers suddenly became audiences and participants. We were fired with questions from Neil Hornick's 1976 play "Loaded Questions" - a script that functions as an interview, perhaps even an interrogation.

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Following that was a lighter, although no less biting, comedy about social housing written by Tony Allen and John Miles in 1973. This play was then re-interpreted by TheatreVision writer Jaswinder Blackwell-Pal in 'The Housing Lottery' which looks at current debates on housing in London.

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And to close, two slightly more surreal scripts 'Dog Accident' by Jane Saunder (1969) and 'Wimpy Burger' by Lucinda Everett and Jaswinder Blackwell-Pal (2015). Here, actors frozen in their costumes reflect on apathy and the failure to follow through on so many of our convictions.

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This series of short plays is well worth catching on it's free final performance this Monday at 18.30 at Swiss Cottage Gallery. The revolving stage truly comes alive and the original props are once again animated to trigger debate.

Article by Anna Lowe

#Camden50 #ReStage