Q&A: Blue Apple
Winchester’ s own Blue Apple are bringing what they call a ‘classic tale with a new twist’ to our stage in January; we sat down with lead actor Katy Francis and Artistic Director Richard Conlon to find out more…
Q: So, in a story that we all know pretty well, what is your ‘twist’?
Richard: Ours isn’t a radical re-interpretation but it does shine a new light because we have an Emilina Scrooge instead of an Ebenezer. Having a woman who is so hard and cruel brings something else to the piece for audience to reflect on. In truth it wouldn’t have occurred to me to make that change if Katy hadn’t put herself up for the role.
Q: How are you feeling about taking on that challenge Katy?
Katy: I’m very happy and excited to be playing the role. I think people will be surprised that Scrooge can be a woman. Learning the lines will be a challenge. Making my own version of the Scrooge character will be hard work, but I’m confident.
Q: Why do you think Scrooge is such an unpleasant person?
Katy: I think she may have had difficult times as a child, without the love of family.
Richard: There are a few key parts of the original text which we have magnified a bit. Death in childbirth seems to have robbed Scrooge of a mother and a sister and turned a father cold and unfeeling. Ironically, Scrooge’s hard-heartedness is only history repeating itself, but she can’t see that.
Q: Have any other theatre companies portrayed Scrooge as a woman?
Katy: I don’t think so.
Richard: I only know of an American company who had a woman playing him as a man, so we think this may be a first!
Q: Blue Apple’s theme for 2019 is ‘reconciliation’, with The Tempest also coming up in the summer – reconciliation means making up after you have fallen out with someone, so what message do you think audiences will take away from your show in January?
Katy: Maybe audiences will say they want to show more kindness to others?
Richard: Maybe they’ll be able to reflect that it’s never too late to build a bridge or make remake a connection with someone?