Jerusalem, a play by Jez Butterworth, is the latest production of STaG (Student Theatre at Glasgow) staged between 24th – 26th November at the Oran Mor. Here are my feelings from the opening night.
I was afraid I was going to be lectured on some Middle East problems or Christianity genesis.
These are also the most occurring words of the play Jerusalem.
The colourful language, as recently defined by Skynews presenter (http://tinyurl.com/n7tkmba), is 150% present in this play. If you’re used to Shakespeare plays only, this one is going to shake you inside out.
Rooster, the main character, is a drug dealer settled in Flintock Wood. His real history is never revealed, fuelled by tales and lies of all the characters. It’s difficult to differentiate what is true to what is not, and the whole play is articulated around this strange and unwelcoming character.
It’s messy. A few times during the play I asked myself what the hell was going on. Messy but funny; I can’t recall any of the character being normal. From Rooster the caravan owner to the eccentric council official Fawcett, none of the regulars of Flintock Wood reflect any kind of peace of mind.
It’s hard to keep up with the different stories of the characters and some of the sudden changes such as a spontaneous party scene. But actually, that might be one of the points of the play…
In terms of the STaG crew, I was impressed by the high standard of each of the actors. Ross Wylie’s performance as Rooster was outstanding. The feelings and attitudes of his character were mastered during the entire play.
The contrast of emotions between Lee (Tom Rouvray) and Davey (Raymond Wilson) was perfectly acted as well.
Nonetheless my personal favourite was the professor, both the character and the actor. His inadequacy with Rooster’s character is perfect but both have a shared outcast position. I was astonished as he succeeded to remain static for an entire scene.
The Oran Mor’s Venue offers a very intimate audience to the performers. The stage set-up limited to a sofa and a table drives all the attention onto the actors, and you really felt like you were part of the performance.
The last show is tonight, and I strongly recommend snapping up any remaining tickets to see this unforgettable play.