Nadia Papachronopoulou on After The Ball

“As a director, I have a passion for new writing that aims to broaden our cultural understanding of theatre. I believe art can provoke a shift in ideas and culture. Ian Grant’s After The Ball, which I’m directing at Upstairs At The Gatehouse, gives us a unique perspective of what happens after war, from the people that went and the people who were left behind. “I’m particularly interested in directing new writing, as I am [interested] in being a part of something fresh that hasn’t been done before. Something that intellectually and emotionally challenges me to examine rigorously my own practice as an artist. I believe the director is an interpretive artist who unpicks the words on the page and examines the relationships created on paper. “Establishing a creative relationship with a writer is an incredibly inspiring process. Together you create entire worlds, tackle issues and build characters that engage and entertain an audience. And theatre is all about working collaboratively – taking the written word and making it live and breathe in a theatrical space. “What struck me most when I first read After The Ball was the interplay between the characters and how the family ties evolve through the play. For me, the play’s challenge and beauty lies in the fact it spans 60 years. The actors, the audience and I really get to explore the core of the characters’ development through the course of their lives, from their 20s to their 60s. “I am also fascinated by the representation of women in the play. Specifically in the mother-daughter relationships and how complicated and delicate they are. “It is really interesting to see the different generations of women and how they shift and change through time. The play starts in 1914, when women in Britain did not have the vote, and goes to the 1970s, when women had gained greater independence. The female characters – and the effect the shifting social and political dynamics of the 20th century had on them – are of paramount importance. “The play also explores the theme of memory. This gives us a great deal of scope for design and imaginative staging, the ways we can transport audience from their seats into the world of the play. Natalie Pryce, our designer, is going to transform the space at Upstairs At The Gatehouse. “I am really eager to see how our audience responds to this urgent and thought-provoking piece.”

After The Ball runs at Upstairs At The Gatehouse from 7 to 24 March.

Related Articles

Go back