Opening night has arrived! Award-winning actor Rupert Graves officially makes his directorial debut tonight (2 February 2018) with The Ungrateful Biped. In this modern take on Dostoyevsky’s Notes from Underground, Graves directs his long-time friend Philip Goodhew in the one-man play, also written by Goodhew. Check out these wonderful first-look production photos – and then get booking!
Fyodor Dostoyevsky created the underground Man in 1864. In doing so, he created one of the most paradoxical, self-lacerating and mesmerising characters in literature; the first existentialist anti-hero. Goodhew has relocated the story and the misanthropic character to modern London.
Question: “what does a civilised man drivel on about with most satisfaction?” Answer: “himself”.
Immured in a horrid basement flat in the hinterlands of London, an anonymous Man creates a video blog. Haunted by disturbing memories and nurturing an abiding malice towards all humanity, including himself, he embarks on a forensic analysis of his “underground soul”.
Sick, spiteful, and ugly, yet convinced of his own genius, he is tormented by the belief that his intelligence is a disease which, in an irrational world, renders him less valuable than an insect. Bitter, alienated and crippled with inertia, the Man shamelessly revels in the depths of degradation he has plumbed in order to validate his existence and demands the right to screw up his life as he sees fit. After all, is he really any different to the rest of us?
The Ungrateful Biped runs at the White Bear Theatre, 138 Kennington Park Road, London, SE11 from Tuesday 30 January to Saturday 17 February 2018, with a press night on 2 February. Performances are Tuesday to Saturday at 7pm, with tickets priced £16 (concessions £12). CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE.