Theatre Inconnu presents the North American premiere of Pornography
The bliss was palpable in London and around the world that July day in 2005 when the city was awarded the 2012 Olympic Games. But the elation turned to terror the following day when four bombs exploded on the city’s transportation system, killing 56 people — including the four bombers.
That historic event, and the days leading up to it, is the focus of Pornography, a play by the UK’s Simon Stephens making its North American premiere in Victoria on Friday, April 29.
“Stephens wanted to do a show with seven stories. He took the Seven Ages of Man and the Seven Deadly Sins, the Nine Circles of Hell and he applied them to seven stories,” says Theatre Inconnu’s Associate Artistic Director Graham McDonald, who is directing the play.
“All of a sudden it came to him, the 7/7 bombings. The seventh month, the seven days in July and this major travesty that happens on the seventh day,” McDonald adds.
Each playlet focuses on different individuals and their lives leading up to the attack.
“In each story, pornography comes in because he turned a microsope onto society and the way that we objectify everything now, everything is pornography. You could use that term and spread it right across society because we objectify absolutely everything, every little minor act of transgression, we turn into something sensational or nothing at all and just walk away.”
McDonald found the play online almost two years ago. He had never heard of the writer and was deeply inspired by the play’s message.
“Looking at the bombers and that act of transgression, and how generally speaking we put that outside of our society and say that he had religious reasons, he had a vendetta, he had these motives but they aren’t societal motives, they are outside society. But the reality is that all four bombers were British born and raised citizens. They were all young men who grew up living British lives, who cheered for Arsenal, played football and lived normal day to day lives and to him, when that came out, he didn’t find that weird at all. This is made in Britain. The act of doing something like that is a very British thing. With this play, he’s taken all of these acts of transgression and put them on the same level. Anyone could do any of these transgressions and thereby we live in a pornographic society. But there is hope for redemption, for forgiveness for each of these acts,” McDonald says.
Starring Pippa Catling, Julian Cervello, Marina Lagacé, James McDougall, Alex Plouffe, Michael Shewchuk, Naomi Simpson and Jason Stevens.
Set design by Tommy Mairs, sound design by Jay Mitchell (Z-Day, Inside) and Lighting Design by Bryan Kenney (Inside).
For more information, visit islandnet.com/~tinconnu.
Tickets are $7 preview, $14 regular and $10 students, seniors and unwaged. Online at ticketrocket.org or by phone at 250-590-6291.
Preview: April 28 at 8pm. Opening April 29, 30 at 8 p.m.
May 3, 5, 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, 14 at 8 p.m.
April 30, May 1, 7, 8, 14 at 2 p.m.