Declan, a new play written and performed by Alistair Hall, is making its debut online to raise funds for London’s The Actors Centre, during its period of closure due to the Covid-19 crisis. The streaming of the play, available via the theatre’s website from 19 to 28 June 2020, precedes an onstage run later this year at The Actors Centre’s John Thaw Studio.
Set in a Wiltshire suburb, Declan is a contemporary ghost story, exploring isolation, fear of the outside world and the distance between two friends. As Jimbo recalls the disappearance of his best friend Declan, he is plagued by ghosts of the past, present and future, and the boundaries between the real and imagined, the dead and the living, become blurred. With the scent of Declan thick in the air, this is a story of magic realism and total obsession.
This new production is directed by playwright, director and actor Alexis Gregory, following his 2020 residency at Soho Theatre for Sex/Crime and a UK tour of the critically acclaimed verbatim piece Riot Act. With videography by award-winning filmmaker Layke Anderson (Mankind and Dylan’s Room), the digital play is available to be streamed for ten days this month. A full stage production is programmed to debut at The Actors Centre later this year.
The digital streaming of Declan raises funds for the #SupportTheActorsCentre appeal – a campaign backed notably by actress and activist Joanna Lumley OBE during the Covid-19 crisis. Tickets are priced £3.
Director Alexis Gregory said:
“Declan, with a great performance from the writer himself, Alistair Hall, is a wonderful piece that beautifully mixes fantasy and reality, truth and lies. At this challenging time for our industry and as we try to find new ways to share our stories, I am really excited to be directing this special digital version of Declan for streaming by The Actors Centre.”
Alistair Hall is a 2019 graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA, MA Theatre Lab). Declan is his first play. Acting credits include Safe (Norwich Theatre Royal, directed by Alexis Gregory), Sardines (Drayton Arms Theatre) and Witness for the Prosecution (County Hall, West End).
Alexis Gregory is a London-based playwright, performer, director and producer. His plays have been performed in theatres and a variety of alternative performance spaces and include his debut, the immersive Slap directed by Rikki Beadle-Blair MBE (Theatre Royal Stratford East; pop-up performances at Channel 4’s London HQ – the channel’s first-ever onsite theatrical presentation; ‘Concrete’, a warehouse space in Shoreditch), Safe (Soho Theatre and London Theatre Workshop, directed by Robert Chevara; Reading Rep and Norwich Theatre Royal, directed by Alexis), Sex/Crime (alternative queer venue The Glory; Soho Theatre) and his self-performed solo verbatim piece Riot Act directed by Beadle-Blair (Duchess Theatre, West End; Arcola Theatre; King’s Head Theatre and two UK tours, most recently February 2020 for LGBT History Month. Additional writing includes Bright Skin Light (Theatre Royal Stratford East, workshop), short plays And Where There Once Were Two (Arcola Queer Collective; The Bunker) directed by Lynette Linton, Freak (Bush Theatre), Orlando, Judy Garland and the Fierce Children of the Light – In Response to the Orlando Attack (St James Theatre, Studio). Alexis’s plays are published by Bloomsbury Publishing and his work has been funded multiple times by Arts Council England.