Drum roll as Settlement Community Players bring little known Brecht play to York stage for the first time York Settlement Community Players have a habit of picking plays outside the familiar and with Bertolt Brecht’s Drums in the Night they continued
this trend. At a time when we are commemorating the centenary of World War One, Drums in the Night focuses on the personal and political effects of the War in 1919 Germany, as we follow a returning soldier, Andreas Kragler (George Stagnell), through the streets and bars of a Berlin in turmoil. Kragler has been thought dead for the past four years. When he returns home he finds his fiancée, Anna (Emma Dubruel), about to marry the war profiteer Murk (James Witchwood). Giving up hope, Kragler is drawn into the backstreets of Berlin and is convinced by the barman Glubb (Ian Giles) and his bunch of lowlifes to join the Sparticist Uprising, which is taking place across the city. But when the final drums sound, will he fight for the revolution, or for the girl he loves? Drums in the Night is Brecht’s second play, from an oeuvre of over thirty major works, and was first performed when he was just 24 years old, which happens to be the exact same age as the current YSCP production’s director, Claire Morley. Written before he fully developed his theories on Epic Theatre, even theatre-goers who count themselves Brecht fans may never have come across this little-seen gem, which critic Herbert Jhering said “changed the face of German literature overnight”, being brought to York for the first time by York Settlement Community Players. YSCP are no strangers to Brecht, having performed The Good Person of Szechwan in 2004. Once again, they’ll be bringing an ensemble cast and live music to Brecht’s work.
Claire says, “I think people will find the play engaging for different reasons: there’s the draw of Brecht, who is undoubtedly one of the greatest playwrights of the 20th Century; the insight into a part of Germany’s history which is often overlooked, and there are the universal themes of love, betrayal, jealousy and disaffection with politics which will strike a chord with lots of people. The script itself manages to be both visceral and poetic, and I am lucky to have a cast drawn from the best of York’s community talent.” Drums in the Night by Bertolt Brecht. Cast list, in order of appearance: Herr Balicke/Glubb – Ian Giles Frau Balicke/Man 2/Augusta – Beryl Nairn Anna Balicke/Newspaper Seller – Emma Dubruel Friedrich Murk/Worker – James Witchwood Babusch/Drunk – Andy Love Marie/Maid – Sonia Di Lorenzo Andreas Kragler – George Stagnell Manke 1/Manke 2 – Tim Holman Bulltrotter/Man 1 – Mark Simmonds Drums in the Night by Bertolt Brecht will be performed at Friargate Theatre, York, YO1 9SL Thursday 30th April – Saturday 2nd May 2015 7.30pm (with a 2pm Saturday matinee) Tickets: £10 Box Office: 01904 613000 Online: http://www.ridinglights.org END For more information about the production, please contact Beryl Nairn Telephone: 07795 112247 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org YSCP website: www.yorksettlementplayers.wordpress.com