Monday, 23 April 2012

Shakespearean Flash - 'Trevor’s Tempest' By Rob Walton

Get the youth theatre to put on The Tempest at the same time as the Royal Shakespeare Company is in town. Whose idea was this? Get some RSC actors to watch rehearsals and get local telly to film it. Whose idea was that? Get me to give a slightly (slightly!) wooden interpretation of Prospero - but audible right at the back and word-perfect. Get my mate Trevor to play Caliban, get my mate Dave to play Ariel and get my mate Miranda to play Miranda (yes, really!).

Get Dave who plays Ariel to wear some sort of loincloth and be covered in make-up, only not the proper stuff from a theatrical supplier, but something that Trevor had found in a drawer in his dad’s garage. This make-up later made it harder to work out what had happened. Tracy, who applied it, didn’t pursue cosmetics or theatre as a profession.

Get Trevor to sort out Dave-as-Ariel’s landing gear for when he does the spirited flying through the air, off a platform and on to the mattress behind the set. Only not a fancy mattress of maybe a metre thickness, but one found in Trevor’s dad’s garage-of-plenty, off their Elaine’s bed – taken out of her room when she moved in with him who was always reading the Collected Works at the corner table in the snug (all right, maybe not always, but at least once).

So the mattress wasn’t much cop – especially because Dave, who was Ariel, didn’t know Trevor’s sister Elaine had moved back in to their parents’, gone to the Civic Theatre, took her double mattress back and swapped it for a single – which she’d nicked out the house of William (him from the snug). Dave/Ariel took off, winking at Tracy and thinking of the after-show party, before landing, noisily, on a bit of stage which wasn’t mattress. There was lots of blood, but it was hard to tell with Trevor and Tracy’s home-made make-up confusing matters.

Trevor came in for a lot of stick and frankly got a bit savage about it all. Fists were thrown, went flying. The RSC people laughed and the local telly made a half-hour documentary.

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