22 September 2014

An Unseasonable Fall of Snow

Actor Jed Brophy tells drama on the waterfront why An Unseasonable Fall of Snow is important to him.

I have had a love affair with Gary’s writing for many years, much of which has its roots here in the Capital. He has a streamlined style that wastes no words, and a handle on the Kiwi psyche and vernacular like no other. And there is such poetry as well. It is writing you want to do justice to.

I toured his seminal Skin Tight for nearly 10 years, and both of my sons got to visit me on tour in their early years. About two years ago, Riley, my elder son, came to me wanting a monologue to use as an audition piece for Long Cloud Youth Theatre, and I gave him my copy of the three-play book, which included Skin Tight, Mo and Jess Kill Suzie and An Unseasonable Fall of Snow. There are some fantastic monologues in both Skin Tight and Snow for young men and he liked the fact that the central character Liam in An Unseasonable Fall of Snow was his age and dealt with topics that effect his demographic, and was relevant within his circle of friends.

When he jokingly said we could do the piece together I readily agreed as I have waited to be the right age to play Arthur ever since seeing it in 1998 during the Festival. However he had to wait for a couple of years for me to finish work on a large film being shot in Miramar. I am grateful he was patient.

Riley used to catch the train from Kapiti every day so he could pursue drama at Wellington High School, and I have caught that same train into work on and off for nearly twenty years. We have both walked the route and so this play has a warm familiar feel to it. The Wellington waterfront is a very big part of the geography of Snow. The story played out largely between the railway station and Courtney Place and back again. Past this very establishment. It is a walk many do everyday when catching the train into the capital.

And so it is fitting that we should be right in the heart of the beast to perform it.  From the upstairs dressing rooms at Circa Theatre, you can see many of the landmarks that pepper this cerebral thriller.

It is not an easy piece, emotionally, for either of the characters and I do think it helps that we have an implicit trust in each other. We also have a huge amount of respect for Geraldine as a Director, having both been guided by her in the past. So if like many, you are wandering past from the station into town, why not stop and take in this taste of amazing New Zealand theatre.

An Unseasonable Fall of Snow opens in Circa Two on 24 September, and runs until 4 October. To book, visit www.circa.co.nz or call the Circa Box Office on 801-7992.

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