The Swindon Fringe blog…Tonight’s Opening plus two new plays are in the spotlight!
This is it. The Swindon Fringe Festival officially starts today. It all feels so long ago that we were looking through all the applicants and picking out this year’s programme. We’re each looking forward to seeing the ones we’ve picked and those that are going to change our view of live theatre. We’re just as nervous as the performers but we couldn’t be more excited.
For the next 10 days, puppeteers, comedians, actors, improvisers and artists will be making you laugh, cry and gasp. You will still be able to buy the cheaper tickets online. Then up to an hour and a half before the performance starts tickets will be available on the door. Each ticket gives you free access to the Closing Night on Sunday 10th April where we will be celebrating the arts and handing out awards. There will be Swindon’s Choice Award where you, the public, get to vote for your favourite show at the festival. You can vote as many times as you like!
Tonight, we open in the classiest way we can at STEAM with champagne, films and music for the Swindon 175 Heritage Evening. We hope to see you there.
In The Spotlight
Saturday 2nd April, 2pm
The Quiet Zone by Michelle Marsiglia
The Quiet Zone is a short, one woman play which details the daily routine of a library assistant. The play explores themes of alienation and identity as well as the pressures that the library services undergo in the age of austerity. The library assistant carries out the daily tasks of shelving, looking for book requests and checking emails. When the squeaky automatic door of the library opens, she gets excited, but no one appears. When the phone rings, she answers with anticipation, encountered only with an answer machine message. But meanwhile she has been chipping away at something, which should intrigue the audience until the final reveal.
The Life We Lived by Trick of Light Theatre Company
The Life We Lived by award winning Swindon playwright Matt Fox follows the relationship between a funeral director and the woman who will eventually become a corpse in his parlour. An old fashioned love story in many ways; but with a strong helping of gallows humour. Two people find themselves together and live out a life of joy and tragedy, which will speak to the romantic and cynic in all of us.
The Life We Lived examines life & death, love & hate, potential & disappointment, through gripping story which is both real and imagined. The gift that life brings, as well as the certainty that this gift will be wasted are the crux of a piece which juggles morbid humour and gut wrenching poignancy.
Who are they?
Trick of Light is back for a second time at the Swindon Fringe Festival. They are a theatre performance company based in Chesterfield, Derbyshire. Trick of Light are particularly passionate about exploring new writing in a bid to make theatre accessible for new writers, graduates and of course any audience. Whilst always striving to challenge an audience Trick of Light believe that by encouraging every person, from many varied backgrounds to experience theatre at affordable prices, then the future of all forms of theatre could be more secure in the long term. They have worked very closely in the past with our very own Matt Fox, performing his plays around the UK and as far away as Australia. They are doing yet another of Matt Fox’s plays: The Life We Lived.
Michelle Marsiglia is another local Swindon artist. The Quiet Zone is her debut into theatre writing. Originally from Virginia Beach in the US, Michelle is using the Swindon Fringe Festival as an opportunity to explore theatre with a little help from her friends. She has a keen eye for the little details that really do bring the story to life. She transforms the mundane everyday into something fun and excitable.
What’s special about them?
Both plays are topical. With the recent announcements of cuts to the Libraries in Swindon, The Quiet Zone, builds a picture how the public currently treat their Libraries. The Life We Lived explores the relationship between a young woman and older gentlemen fighting to be together in a modern world. They are both hitting the facts hard in their own way and will certainly have you wanting to discuss it all afterwards.
The Quiet Zone is set in a little neighbourhood Library familiar to all communities of the UK. The script is bare of any words spoken out loud and looks like a long list of stage directions, but I assure you it’s won’t be as deathly quiet as you’d might expect a library to be. This silly and fun short play will give you a giggle as you get a little insight into Michelle Marsiglia’s own professional experiences. A one women short play that depicts the everyday life of a lonely Librarian.
The Life We Lived is a cruel and hilarious performance and in true Matt Fox style, it plays with the audience’s perception of reality, morals and personal opinions. The piece opens to a man preparing a woman for her funeral and begins to tell us what it’s like to be around death. Morbid as that sounds, the rest of the story is a complete whirlwind of drama and sensations that will knock you dead. The talented duo from Trick of Light have been taking this on tour since the beginning of the year and the reviews are brilliant!
The Saturday afternoon is going to be a good champagne hangover cure from the night before at STEAM. These two new pieces of writing will ease you into the Swindon Fringe mood and set the tone for the rest of the week.
What they had to say…
Describe your company in three words.
ToL: Love new writers!
What’s special / unique about your show?
MM: It’s an unusual depiction on loneliness in a library setting and it’s the first play I have put on.
ToL: It’s new, it’s a rollercoaster of emotions and just when you feel comfortable with it, something happens or is said to change that!
What kind of audiences do you appeal to?
MM: Those who are a little more open minded. It’s going to be a strange experience
ToL: People who perhaps like a challenge, like something contemporary. People who are up for something new and people who like a good chat.
Who inspires your work?
MM: Samuel Beckett in this case.
If you would like to see these two great performances on the Saturday 2nd April, book your tickets here: