Dear Brutus explores what might happen if ordinary men and women, mired in unhappiness, were given the magical opportunity to utterly change their lives, or, as the butler Matey says, the chance to "take the right turning." We would invite the audience to witness the opportunity to see the world remade in the image of uninhibited desire.
Lydia is in her first year reading French at Trinity. From the age of 10 she was a member of the Downley Lodge School of Speech and Drama and regularly took part in drama festivals around the County. Having taken on acting roles in a variety of productions, including Lord of the Flies and Bugsy Malone, during her time at school, she is now keen to try her hand at producing here in Oxford. Her experience of organising events at school, including the artistic direction of her summer Leaver's Ball and an annual House Music competition involving over 50 pupils helped to develop her organisation, communication and leadership skills. Working last summer as a Conference Assistant at Keble, she developed her knowledge of effective marketing and logistics which will no doubt come into use throughout the production process of Dear Brutus. She is thoroughly looking forward to working on this project and is excited to gain experience alongside Alexia.
Alexia is a second year reading French and Italian at Christ Church. In her first year she directed and choreographed a new version of Euripides’s 'Iphigenia at Aulis - Altar/Alter' (TT16, Christ Church Gardens), co-wrote and produced her college’s award winning Cuppers entry, 'Lady Summers’ (Best New Writing, Best Play) (BT Studio, MT15). She choreographed for 'Macbeth' (TT16, Christ Church Gardens) as well and portrayed the Witch. She worked on the acclaimed new play 'Naked is the Realm' by Rebekah King (MT16, St Peter’s College Chapel) as co-director and choreographer. She made her directorial debut aged eight, when she persuaded her cousins into performing Macbeth for her extended family, and her interest in choreography was sparked by long summers spent pretending wooden sticks were swords in the Swiss woods with her brothers, as well as more conventional inspirations. She is an alumna of the Yale School of Drama Directing Summer Session (Summer 2016). Her pre-Oxford credits include Aeschylus’s 'Agamemnon' in the original Greek, (Bryanston, August 2013), as well as Antigone in Jean Anouilh’s ‘Antigone', and Electra in Sophocles’s ‘Electra'. She writes as an Opera critic for the Oxford Culture Review in her spare time.
Penny Sherlock, Lighting Director
Penny is a first year undergrad at Somerville College, studying Biochemistry and the lighting director for 'Dear Brutus.' She has been involved in the production of school performances of 'The Tempest' for the School's Shakespeare Competition, 'As you like it', 'Little Shop of Horrors' and 'Guys and Dolls'. She has experience in directing lighting for several of these performances, and is looking forward to the flexibility and independence that director will give her in creative decisions for lighting as a means to emphasise the stage setting and mood of this intense and dynamic play.
Catriona Ellis, Costumes
Catriona is a first year undergraduate reading Spanish and Linguistics at Trinity College. She has been involved in the theatre for many years, having worked as Venue Staff at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival for Paradise Green. Her experience with costume prior to Oxford includes being a Dresser for Kiss Me, Kate!(Kings Theatre, Portsmouth, 2014) and Assistant Costume Designer for Thoroughly Modern Millie (Kings Theatre, Portsmouth, 2015). Dear Brutus is her first production in Oxford.
SALOMEYA GVARADZE, MARKETING
Salomeya is a first year student at St Edmund Hall reading French. She is currently Vice President (Advertising) for the upcoming St Edmund Hall Ball in 2018. Her main responsibilities as VP include applying for funding, promoting the ball and sourcing, attracting and communicating with sponsors. On the drama scene here in Oxford, she was co-producer for Teddy Hall OUDS Cuppers production "Pleasure Chamber" and her role entailed promoting the production and applying for funding. Before coming to university, she was also marketing director for one of her productions in high school (Much Ado About Nothing) which was performed both to students and to the general public.
Georgina Hayward, Production Manager
Georgina is a first year historian at St Peter’s College. After having acted in one of her college’s cupper entries, ‘Constellations’, Dear Brutus will be the first production that she has been involved with at Oxford and her first experience of being part of the backstage team. She has trained with the Royal Shakespeare Company (2014) and previous acting credits include ‘Narnia: A Rock Musical’ (Inter-Church Productions) and ‘Beauty and the Beast’ (Unbound Theatre). She was also head of press and marketing for the Aylesbury-based Florence Nightingale Fashion Show (2015).
Mati warner, margaret
Mati is a 1st year English student at Univ. She co-wrote and played an eccentric grandmother in 'Morality Bites' for Cuppers (2016), and took part in Univ's comedy Revue. She has achieved LAMDA grades 1 through to 8, and took part in various productions at school, including 'Guys and Dolls', 'Grease', 'The Provoked Wife' and 'Under Milk Wood'. She is really excited about both the rehearsal process and the final performances at the O'Reilly.
Teddy Briggs, mabel purdie
Teddy is a 1st year English student at Somerville college and this is her second play so far at Oxford. She's taken part in summer schools at LAMDA and Slyvia Young as well as festivals around the country. She has been involved in various school productions, as well as Rebekah King's Naked is the Realm last term. She has notoriously terrible taste in music and is a lover of chocolate/all things Monty Python-esque.
Angus forbes, matey
Angus is a first year PPE student at Oriel College. He was in a few productions at school, the largest being an outdoor production of Romeo and Juliet in which he played the role of Friar Laurence. Whilst at Oxford, he has co-written and directed ‘BOD’ as part of the Drama Cuppers competition and acted in ‘The Nightingale and the Rose’ (BT Studio, HT17). He is really looking forward to tackling the character of Matey and performing in the Keble O’Reilly.
Rose Deemer, Alice dearth
Rose Deemer is a visiting student studying English at Blackfriars and in her second year at her home university in Ohio. She has performed in six Shakespeare productions, most recently playing the Fool in King Lear. She is excited to explore the character of Alice and to help bring this profound and unique play to life.
Meg Harrington, Joanna trout
Meg Harrington is a 2nd Year English Student at Teddy Hall. This is her first O'Reilly production but she has performed in garden plays (Virgilia in Coriolanus, HT '16; Lady Macbeth in Macbeth, TT'16; Matthew in Threepenny Opera HT '17), the BT (Sarah in Playwright, NWF '16; Tessa in Narkissos, NWF '17; Crow in The Nightingale and the Rose HT '16) and St Peter's Chapel (Jean in Naked is the Realm MT '16). Some say that Meg does too much Drama.
Zack O'dowd, Mr. Coade
Zack is a second year mathematician at Magdalen. His past productions have included Macbeth, Laura Wade’s Posh and most recently The Importance of Being Earnest (Magdalen Garden Play TT16). He is looking forward to playing an older character in Dear Brutus, and mastering the art of pirouetting.
James Geddes, mr. dearth
James is a first year historian at Magdalen College. With the exception of the college cuppers production, "Mortar and Slay", this will be James' first play at Oxford and he is looking forward to both the rehearsal process and the performances immensely. Previous acting experience ranges from tragedy to comedy and from Shakespeare to Butterworth, but was limited to school productions.
Patrick Orme, lob
Patrick is a first year undergraduate studying Russian and Philosophy at Exeter College. He took part in several school productions including playing the role of Lodovico in Webster’sThe White Devil and acting in a competition winning adaptation of Dylan Thomas’ radio play, Under Milk Wood. In Michaelmas, he starred in an adaptation of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s novella, The Double, at the Burton Taylor Studio. He is really excited to play such a fascinating, mysterious, and unique, character as Lob.
Georgia Heneage, Lady Caroline
Georgia is a first year studying english literature and language at St Catz. From the age of 10 she was a member of ‘stage-coach’ youth drama school, and took part as a chorus member in the Mayflower Theatre’s production of ‘Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat’. Since then she has acted in a number of plays at school, the most recent of which being the role of ‘Hodel’ in her school production of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’. At Oxford, she has been involved with the Catz Cuppers team production of ‘Tiresias’ which won best overall show. Most recently, she co-wrote and co-directed Retale Production’s ‘The Nightingale & The Rose’ at the Burton Taylor Studio. She is really looking forward to getting more involved in Oxford theatre, and ‘Dear Brutus’ especially caught her eye for it’s beautiful script and magical story.
Niamh Simpson, Mrs. Coade
Niamh is in her second year studying English Literature at Lady Margaret Hall and becoming increasingly aware of her tendency to be cast in roles at least forty years her senior. Pre-Oxford, in addition to appearing in school productions of Pride and Prejudice (Bryanston, 2011) and Guys and Dolls (Bryanston, 2013), she wrote, directed and acted in The Princess Initiative, which she subsequently took to Edinburgh in 2014. At Oxford she has appeared as Lady Benbow in Thark (Michael Pilch Studio HT16), and as Athena in The Trojan Women (BT Studio, MT17), while most of her clothes have made guest appearances in The White Guard (The Albion Beatnik Bookshop, HT17). She has also worked behind the scenes on illustrations and graphic design for The Pillowman (Michael Pilch Studio, MT17) and Four Lions (Michael Pilch Studio, HT17). She is looking forward to being part of Dear Brutus' revival and finally playing 'the nicest', for once
Daniel Thomson, Mr. Purdie
Daniel Thomson is a second year at Trinity studying History. He has been involved in Oxford drama since his first year, playing Algernon in a cuppers performance of the Importance of Being Earnest, and Benedick in the Trinity Lawns Play production of Much Ado About Nothing. In Michaelmas of his second year he played the role of Tybalt in RxJ, which ran at the Pegasus Theatre. Since then he has acted in Nárkissos as part of the OUDS New Writing Festival at the BT Theatre. He is looking forward to acting alongside an incredibly talented cast and crew as the brilliant but awful Jack Purdie.