In development
Two performers manipulate overhead projectors to create a film-noir image of slatted blinds and a streetlight outside. A third performer in a fedora peers through the projected image of the blinds as if spying on someone outside
Two performers manipulate overhead projectors to create a film-noir image of slatted blinds and a streetlight outside. A third performer in a fedora peers through the projected image of the blinds as if spying on someone outside
Two performers dressed in black crouch in the dark by two overhead projectors. These project a handmade image of a map of land and ocean with a ship sailing on it

Fragments

by Laura Swift and Russell Bender

With additional material devised by the company

Inspired by fragments of Euripides

-

Fragments

by Laura Swift and Russell Bender

With additional material devised by the company

Inspired by fragments of Euripides

-

Fragments

Amidst a vast black space, their faces illuminated by the light of an overhead projector, three archaeologists pore over scraps of paper from ancient Greece. The Muse, daughter of Memory and siren of Jazz, arrives to bring their jumbled lines to life.

Fragments is a show made out of a handful of lost and found scraps of fractured text. Presenting tantalising glimpses of a lost ancient masterpiece with drama, humour, shadow puppetry, and dazzling song, Fragments is an entrancing meditation on how we perceive the world, construct the truth, and remember the past.

Fragments of what?

In a forgotten back-room of the Sackler Library in Oxford is a small office with walls lined by 1970s wood panelling. Its many cupboards are filled with cardboard boxes. These contain hundreds of thousands of fragments of papyrus dating back 2000 years. The majority are untouched, still waiting to be deciphered by one of a tiny handful of experts. They were found by Victorian archaeologists who discovered a gigantic rubbish dump from antiquity while digging in the Egyptian desert. These scraps of paper contain everything from shopping lists, to tax receipts, personal correspondence, and lost ancient Greek literature.

Fragments takes a handful of remnants of a lost masterpiece by the great playwright Euripides, called Cresphontes. All that survives of the play are several dozen fragments, which range from a few pages-worth of a scene, to some scattered lines and broken phrases, and an account of the myth upon which it was based - a gripping family drama based on partial truths and misunderstandings.

In our divided, disjointed world, Fragments explores how the construction of the truth from incomplete information is an ancient tale that keeps being replayed.

Cast

To be announced

Creative Team

Laura Swift
Co-writer
Russell Bender
Director
Lucy Sierra
Designer
Jess Mabel Jones
Puppetry Director

Developing Fragments

in 2014, we were commissioned by the Being Human Festival and Oxford University to spend two weeks exploring how to retell stories from fragments of lost plays.

In 2017, we were supposed by Ovalhouse, the Leverhulme Foundation, Arts at the Old Fire Station, The Open University and the Jerwood Space to start developing Fragments. This culminated in four work-in-progress performances at Ovalhouse, London and the Old Fire Station.

We have now been awarded a grant by the British Academy towards developing and producing the full production of Fragments.

No items found.

Photo galleries

Related posts

No related posts