An Interview with Mabel Chambers

Lear

Tell us a bit about yourself. What made you interesting in directing?
 

I have lived and studied in Canterbury since 2014, graduating in Social Anthropology last summer. Growing up, I was lucky enough to see lots of theatre, some amazing some less so, but I really fell in love with the art form. For as long as I remember, I’ve always loved stories and storytelling whether that’s in books, films, or theatre and directing gives such a unique opportunity to explore so many stories.

 

What inspired you to choose this play – why this one in particular?
 

I love changing around expectations in plays, and this one is full of opportunities for just that, with so many productions relying on clichés and typecast characters. I also think that the central story is fascinating, and very affecting, in a way I don’t often get with Shakespeare plays in all honesty, and I want to bring that to the stage with this interpretation.

 

What do you think is unique about your production?
 

Definitely having a female Lear! But I also hope that the production brings a new attitude to this classic play that highlights the stories and the people in them whilst bringing the spirit of Shakespeare to the contemporary theatre audience.

 

Do you have a favourite scene or line?
 

I love Cordelia’s line ‘Sure I will never marry like my sisters, to love my father all’. For a character that is so often portrayed as timid and quiet, this is a sassy, quick witted insult of her sisters! My favourite scene in my play is the one on the heath and in the hovel. They’re definitely the pivotal point of the play, as well as bringing together all the different themes and aspects of my interpretation in a twist that I won’t spoil here!

 

Why should people audition for your play/and for CSF in general?
 

CSF is an amazing opportunity for artists, behind the scenes and on the stage, to get experience in theatre which is hard to come by these days. With my cast and crew, I want to get as much variation in experience as possible both within theatre and life in general, to help create an authentic feel to the contemporary setting of the play. This will also hopefully give some new artists first time experience, like me!

 

What can audiences expect from your play?
 

I hope that my play will be enjoyably affecting and thought provoking. I hope that this interpretation will bring this classic play to a human, tangible level; that it will make the familiar characters both unfamiliar and relatable, and that it will remind the audience of the emotional strength and power of us humans.

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