School Production 2007 The Lion, the Witch and Room 66
This was a reimagining of CS Lewis's best loved classic, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. I wanted to produce a school production that reflected the diversity of our school. To this end, I reimagined the CS Lewis classic in reverse and raised contemporary social issues with a strong anti-war message.
The play is set in a timeless present. There is a 'war on terror' being fought in the streets of London with daily explosions and street battles between government forces and urban fighters making life on the streets dangerous for citizens. The president, Bluish, dictates that all children will be evacuated to government 'evacugee' centres in the countryside. Sunny Pastures is one such place, run by the coldhearted Mrs Drydon. At the centre, four disparate and somewhat disaffected children meet. Exploring forbid areas of the centre, they find their way through a portal into Rania: a parched and barren land laid to waste by the wicked Dryzelda, who has stripped the land of its mineral wealth and enslaved the animals, its citizens. Only a depressed lion can save them. So the children and their new found animal friends set out on a hazerdous journey to Lion Mountain to seek the help they need.
We had great fun on this production. It was a challenge to costume. We worked hard in rehearsals on getting the essence of these largely animal characters. We had a wonderful soundtrack of songs from the 80s and 90s, and some original music like The Lion Blues, from Mr Lake, to choreograph dances to. Finally, the whole was a colourful, funny and moving tale about resiliance, team work and not giving up - on yourself or others. We took it to the Leatherhead Drama Festival the following Autumn where it was highly praised.