This weekend, SUSU Circus Society will be hosting their first show in the Annex Theatre, supported by Aidan Pittman of SUSU Comedy Soc and a cast of SUSU Performing Arts actors. The Edge caught up with Aidan and Emily Barnes of Circus Soc to chat about the show.
Hey guys, so Genre Killer is a play that incorporates Circus Soc’s skills – it’s certainly a first for PA. How have you brought this all together?
AP: Hi Caitlin, well I must admit that before we started, I was a complete novice about Circus Soc and didn’t know about the extent of the skills they have. But after going to some rehearsals with them, I was blown away by the range of tricks they could do and it gave me some great ideas as to which circus acts would work well in the different genres of film that are featured in the play. So after putting circus acts into the different scenes, it allowed the production team and myself to work with the actors in rehearsing the scenes while Emily Barnes (the Circus Director) and Circus Soc worked on the tricks. Finally, when we had enough space, we amalgamated the two together, which actually was surprisingly smooth and quick!
What can audiences expect from Genre Killer?
AP: There’s so much crammed into the show it’s incredible really. First of all, it’s a fast paced comedy packed with silly jokes and mad characters. Each scene is set in a different genre of film with loads of gags, giving it an almost ‘sketch show feel’, all pinned together by an exciting murder mystery!
Secondly, we’re using multimedia throughout the show by having a projector show videos and movies during and between scenes. For scene changes we’ve re-dubbed some famous movie scenes with some pretty questionable dialogue and made fake trailers for some of the fictional film characters featured in the play. We even have a scene entirely set in the genre of animation that looks absolutely brilliant.
And of course Circus Society’s trick and routines are really amazing! Every time I watch them during rehearsals, I stop being a director and become a stunned audience member, they’re so good.
You’ve written the play yourself – can you tell us about the process?
AP: The play actually started out as a sketch idea I had for the Edinburgh Fringe last year, about a film noir detective that gets thrown into the genre of comedy and has to solve a grisly murder. But the more I played with the idea, I realised how much potential there was for writing a whole play around it, set in loads of genres. So by the end of the Fringe I had written most of the play and Circus Soc really liked it, so I finished it off. But what has been great is since rehearsals have started, the cast have added so many jokes and brilliant ideas into the script and have made it even funnier. That’s exactly what I wanted to happen, as it gets the cast really excited in a show that they’ve had a huge hand in creating.
What plans do Circus Soc have for future shows?
EB: “We’re always open to new ideas and are happy to collaborate, we just want a fun & interesting platform for our members to display their skills and a way to engage with the audience.
The Case of the Film Genre Killer is showing at the Annex Theatre on Friday 6th and Saturday 7th of March, at 7.30pm. Tickets for can be reserved here.