Actors to star in three plays at once in three different theatres

‘We’ve done a lot of spreadsheets and we’ve done a lot of sprinting between theatres,’ said artistic director Robert Hastie

Louis Chilton
Tuesday 09 November 2021 09:51
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<p>The Crucible and Lyceum theatres will play host to a spectacular theatrical experiment next year</p>

The Crucible and Lyceum theatres will play host to a spectacular theatrical experiment next year

A group of actors are set to perform in three different plays simultaneously as part of an audacious experiment by a Sheffield theatre complex.

The three plays will form a trilogy entitled Rock/Paper/Scissors, with each standalone play taking place at the same time across three neighbouring venues – the Sheffield Crucible, Studio and Lyceum theatres.

Artistic director Robert Hastie said (per BBC News) that the undertaking constituted a “big challenge”, and is being attempted to mark the theatres’ 50th anniversary next year.

Actors will “sprint” between the venues in the time when they would usually be backstage, with the production requiring precise timing and co-ordination.

“We’ve done a lot of spreadsheets and we’ve done a lot of sprinting between theatres, but until we actually get the actors in rehearsal, there’s a lot that we’ve yet to discover,” said Hastie.

“The actors won’t be going into backstage mode because an exit from one play is an entrance directly into another, with a short sprint between rooms.”

The cast has yet to be announced, with the logistics of the project still being finessed by Hastie and Chris Bush, the show’s playwright.

“If that timing isn’t exactly right, then the whole thing won’t work. Even if it means going up an extra staircase and back down another, we’ll have to create a route [between rehearsal rooms] that’s exactly the same distance as between the stages,” added Hastie.

“The precision of it will have to be immaculate. Chris is building in some space and some failsafe mechanisms within the scenes, but the whole thing will have to operate like a machine.”

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