In the clash between the political and the personal, The Sword of Alex, by award-winning playwright Rib Davis, examines how identity fares in the struggle. As the premiere production starts previews at London’s White Bear Theatre, where it runs until 6 October 2018, Entertainment Views’ Helen McWilliams caught up with cast member Kate Terence. She threw in tips for budding actors too!
Thanks for talking to Entertainment Views, Kate. Tell me about the production and your character.
The production is one of the more exciting challenges that I have taken on in a long time. I am among a cast of four; they are all excellent actors, so the bar has been raised for me. My character, Calantha, has all the qualities of a strong but complex female character, so I am enjoying the challenge of trying to reach all aspects of her in rehearsal.
What was your initial impression of the script?
My initial impression of the script was its immediacy and its relevance to our current world. It has a classic, timeless quality to it, but if you were to equate it with music, it is more like extremely precisely written jazz structured in a classical form. I wanted to be part of it straight away.
What are the challenges of the piece?
The challenges are in the fact that there is the macro-view of the characters, but there is also the micro-view of their personal worlds Making that have a flow that serves the play to its best is a stimulating challenge. And there are plenty of lines to learn, but I’m not complaining!
How do you feel the White Bear space will lend itself to the production?
The space is very intimate so the audience will receive it very clearly. There is no room for error, which can be exposing to an actor, but is also massively exciting. They will see something that they may well recognise and have a chance to reflect upon it more instantly.
What do you hope the reactions from the audience will be?
I hope they are stimulated and provoked by it, that they come out at the end and find themselves talking about its content, relating it to their lives and the world’s politics.
Why should everybody buy a ticket to The Sword of Alex?
It is not often that a brilliantly written play comes out, with four excellent actors and a superb director. That is why it is worth buying a ticket.
Do you have any advice for budding actors?
Stick at it, persist, develop the skin of a rhinoceros but maintain the soul of a baby. Be choosy in what you do and challenge yourself: if you are scared of it, that’s often a reason to do it. Always believe in yourself, but have the humility to believe you can also improve and become even better.
The Sword of Alex runs from 18 September to 6 October 2018 at the White Bear Theatre, 138 Kennington Park Road, London SE11 4DJ. Performances are Tuesdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm, with Sunday matinees at 4pm. Tickets are priced £16 (concessions £12). CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE!