One of England’s most exciting playwrights, Alistair McDowall, visits Madrid
One of England’s most exciting playwrights, Alistair McDowall, visits Madrid to talk about his works and his vision of theatre in the framework of the project Read, Play, Meet, Repeat organized in Madrid by Bella Batalla, Esto Podría Ser and El Pavón Teatro Kamikaze in collaboration with the British Council / New UK Drama.
“There are no rules in theatre, you can do anything” Alistair McDowall
Defined by Simon Stephens in 2013 as England's most exciting playwright, Alistair McDowall grew up in the North East of England and first gained national recognition at the age of 24, when his play Brilliant Adventures, a fast-paced tale of brotherhood, addiction and breaking the laws of physics, was awarded a prestigious Bruntwood Prize for new writing in 2011. Described by renowned theatre critic Alan Hulme as a “ hugely entertaining black comedy sci-fi thriller”, the play was developed at the Royal Court Young Writers’ Festival 2012 and subsequently co-produced by the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester and Live Theatre, Newcastle.
Almost simultaneously Captain Amazing premiered at the 2013 Edinburgh Festival Fringe followed by a national tour in 2014, a funny and poignant one-man show about Britain's only part-time superhero who represents how all parents strive to be heroes in the eyes of their children.
Alistair’s next play Talk Show, a black comedy about talking and transmission, premiered at the Royal Court Theatre in 2013. It is the story of three generations of men, all struggling to survive financially, emotionally and existentially and yet the more they need each other, the more they drift apart. The play melds the funny with the tragic and while not necessarily offering any happy endings still manages to imbue a certain feeling of hope.
It was with Pomona that Alistair received critical acclaim from the media and audiences and led him to be ranked as one of Britain’s most exciting new playwrights. A sinister thriller portraying a mythically surreal vision of society, Pomona was premiered in 2014 at the Orange Tree Theatre in London and received widespread praise both for the production and the playwright.
His next play, X, opened at London’s Royal Court Theatre in 2016. Set on Pluto, where a mission loses contact with Earth, it’s a story of life and loss played out across unthinkable distances, raising questions about the limits of cognition and the structural weaknesses of the human mind.
His most recent play Zero for the Young Dudes! was commissioned by the National Theatre for its annual youth theatre festival “National Theatre Connections” in 2017 and is a story about a group of young people at a summer camp plotting a revolution. Performed by a number of youth theatre companies all over the UK, it’s once again characterised by its black comedy and has been described as The Hunger Games meeting Lord of the Flies.
Alistair’s work has been translated and produced internationally.
Alistair McDowall will visit Madrid on 3rd and 4th May, 2019.
You’re welcome to attend a dramatized reading of his works at the Pavón Kamikaze Theatre on Saturday 4th May at 12.00h (free admission while space is available)