Sarah Rutherford’s new play The Girl Who Fell, about teenage death, mourning, coincidence and healing, is sensitive and heartfelt.
Writer Sarah Rutherford cleverly weaves together disparate elements of a sensitive story with subtlety and humour in The Girl Who Fell.
Trafalgar Studios, London – until 23 November 2019 We can only judge the dead through the narratives of others. When those narratives contain a level of both culpability and finger-pointing, who are we to believe? And should it matter when the dead girl at the heart of their concerns is a 15-year-old who committed suicide by jumping from a road …
I feel like I’ve known writer Sarah Rutherford for years… that’s one of the positives of social media. (We follow each other on Twitter.) The irony is it’s her new play, The Girl Who Fell, about some of the negatives of social media that finally precipitated my meeting her in person.
Stage Traffic’s premiere of Sarah Rutherford’s darkly funny new play The Girl Who Fell has impressed critics for its warmth, quirkiness and offbeat sensitivity. We’ve rounded up review highlights. Time get booking!
The aftermath of a teenager’s death really shouldn’t be this funny, but Sarah Rutherford has created a thoroughly modern, soul-searching and hilarious play.
We’re counting down to the world premiere of The Girl Who Fell, Sarah Rutherford’s darkly funny new play about parenting and social media dangers, opening this month at Trafalgar Studios. Sneak a peek inside rehearsals with our new gallery – and then get booking!
Sarah Rutherford explores the dark side of social media in her new play The Girl Who Fell – but, on the plus side, she also has Twitter to thank for the play getting its premiere next month at Trafalgar Studios.
As part of her ongoing post-show Q&A series, Mates co-founder Terri Paddock reunites with Stage Traffic at Trafalgar Studios for the world premiere of Sarah Rutherford’s The Girl Who Fell. Got any questions for creatives and cast?
The Girl Who Fell, the new play by acclaimed Adult Supervision author Sarah Rutherford, gets its world premiere at the West End’s Trafalgar Studios 2, running from 15 October to 23 November 2019.
Most families have a story or three, the kind of tales that go down in folklore, destined to be repeated at family events no matter embarrassing for the parent/sibling/etc involved.
Directed by Paul Hyett
Helming his second full length feature, Paul Hyett’s Howl is a movie whose title along with the poster’s full moon, give a clear hint at the story’s lycanthropic pitch and proves to be one of the year’s best horror pictures so far.
Some of the best werewolf movies have been made in Britain and in one of the most imaginative takes on the genre since John Landis’ groundbreaking An American Werewolf In London, Hyett’s yarn (penned by Mark Huckerby and Nick Ostler) kicks off in the comfortingly familiar surroundings of Waterloo Station.
Train based terror has long fuelled the romance of ghost and horror tales and in a summer that has rail strikes gripping the nation, it’s refreshing to watch Alpha Trains’ (a fictional company whose livery is only loosely based on South West Trains) evening express pull out of the London terminus, with its dozen or so souls on board heading towards far more than their usual Waterloo sunset.
There is an ever-so British budgetary constraint to the movie that suggests an air of Hammer Horror. The cast are far from household names, (though in a neat touch, Rosie Day and Sean Pertwee, both carryovers from Hyett’s The Seasoning House make short-lived cameos) the purpose built railway carriage set wouldn’t withstand the scrutiny of even a mildly obsessive train-geek and some of the matte work is cringeworthy. But no matter, for as a deer on the line brings driver Pertwee’s train to a shuddering and unscheduled halt, it is only a matter of time before (nearly) all of the onboard souls succumb in turn to beautifully brutal slaughter.
In a sometimes creaking story, the director’s skill lies as much in the suspense he’s woven into the film as it does in the gruesomeness of his imagery. Having cut his teeth (sorry) designing special make up and effects for creature features such as The Descent movies, Hyett has a keen eye for what shocks. To be fair there’s nothing here that quite matches Rick Baker’s award winning genius in American Werewolf, but Hyett knows his craft.
Also impressive is that amidst a script of occasional corniness, (The Seasoning House had a far superior text) Hyett coaxes performances from his cast that convince throughout. Ed Speleers leads as a bumbling train guard searching for the hero inside himself, whilst Elliot Cowan is Adrian, a handsomely chiselled bounder and a womanising cad who in a neat post-modern touch reveals that he won’t employ women at his City finance house because of their annoying tendency to fall pregnant. Back in the day it used to be that just being a bastard marked a character out to deserve a spectacular death – turns out in 2015 he has to be a sexist bastard too.
For the cinephiles playing werewolf bingo, Howl trots out most of the tropes, (but not all mind, there are no silver bullets in this picture) with the occasional twist. We’ve been brought up to know that those bitten by the beast have to become werewolves themselves. Hyett however offers up a nod to the zombie genre by having his victims spew that particularly dark red blood, only ever found in those transitioning to the world of the un-dead. There is also a lovely touch as Ania Marson, Jenny an elderly female victim, finds herself vomiting out her dentures, only to then develop a far more useful set of incisors, infinitely superior to anything available on the NHS.
As Ellen the train’s trolley stewardess, Holly Weston gives an assured performance that suggests a hint of sexual frisson and rivalry amongst the characters, whilst Calvin Dean’s Paul provides occasional moments of drunken slob comedy (and classy suspense) before his number’s up.
Whilst Hyett’s best may yet await us, Howl remains a ripping yarn, cleverly realised and yet again, only enhanced by Paul E. Francis’ intelligent score. Not just worth the ticket and popcorn, it’s a great date-movie too.