100 years of war on stage

RAVAGES OF WAR: Promotional images for the play ‘Passion’ which will mark the anniversary of the Great War

RAVAGES OF WAR: Promotional images for the play ‘Passion’ which will mark the anniversary of the Great War

RAVAGES OF WAR: Promotional images for the play ‘Passion’ which will mark the anniversary of the Great War

First published in News by

A THEATRE group is waiting in the wings to launch its new community project to mark the anniversary of the First World War.

Weymouth-based AsOne Theatre has secured funding to bring its play ‘Passion’, to the stage and into communities.

It interweaves five stories of Dorset soldiers and their families 100 years apart.

From a present day family affected by the conflict in Afghanistan to the horror of trench warfare, the play reveals how the ravages of war ripple down the generations.

Recordings made as part of the project featuring descendants of First World War soldiers will be given to the Dorset History Centre at a launch event on Friday, September 5.

There will also be a rehearsed reading of selected extracts from the play before it goes on tour this autumn. The production coincides with the Royal British Legion’s Centenary Poppy Appeal.

Funding from different organisations including Arts Council England, Heritage Lottery Fund and West Dorset District Council has helped the group to conduct research, make audio recordings, assemble a team to bring it to life, support performances in local schools and community venues, and run workshops for students.

The premiere performance of Passion will be at the Dorchester Corn Exchange on October 8 and touring until November 21.

AsOne’s artistic director and producer Jane McKell, pictured, said schools in Dorset will be visited as part of the project and the play will tour all over the county as well as across the south and south west.

She added: “We are immensely proud of our professional theatre work and the practitioners involved.

“AsOne works hard to take new writing about Dorset, made in Dorset not only throughout Dorset but into some eight counties, and this year into south west London.”

Playwright Stephanie Dale, whose credits include Dorchester Community Play, has been commissioned to pen the production.

Joining her as composer is Dorset folk musician and storyteller Tim Laycock.

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