'Hole' lot of trouble in Doncaster play Falling!

Jordan Whyte as Claire in Theatre Alibi's show Falling
Jordan Whyte as Claire in Theatre Alibi's show Falling
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A new show that looks at what happens when your life is literally undermined comes to Doncaster next week.

Falling was inspired by the extraordinary phenomenon of sinkholes, large gaping holes that suddenly appear and can swallow up buildings, cars and people whole.

The show combines performances with projection, puppetry and a live soundscape.

Director Nikki Sved of Theatre Alibi answers questions about the show.

What was the inspiration behind Falling?

Dan Jamieson, our associate writer, was fascinated by a picture in a newspaper of a sinkhole, in Chile, I think, and started finding out as much as he could about them.

The photo that inspired Falling was one of a modest semi-detached house in Cornwall with an enormous hole in its back garden. It’s the juxtaposition of the ordinariness of the house with such an epic event that’s terrifying.

What would happen to you if you wandered out into the garden some winter’s evening and fell into that hole?

It’s just so random, so at odds with any sense of security.

Even if you are lucky enough not to be injured, the experience of falling would still be there to haunt you…the sense that the ground beneath your feet could open up at any moment.

That’s what happens in Falling to Alice.

The piece follows the teenage Alice and her mother, Claire, as they struggle to come to terms with what’s happened.

At its heart, the play is about how we all have to cope with the unsteadiness of life; we none of us know what might be around the corner.

How challenging is it to combine all the elements of music, puppetry and projection into a play?

I find it one of the great pleasures of creating new work.

Of course, there are very real practical and technical challenges involved, but I’m so lucky to be able to draw on the wealth of experience and expertise that there is in the team.

We work very closely together – our composer Thomas has his office right by the rehearsal room, so he can write music in direct response to the work I’m creating with the actors.

The design team’s workshop is next to the rehearsal room and so puppets and props fly between the two and can be played with and adjusted as necessary.

Duncan, our projection designer, is in the room with us trying things out as we go.

It’s an incredibly integrated approach which allows us to tell each part of our story with the most effective means.

Falling is at Cast in Doncaster next Wednesday. Box office: call 01302 303 959 or visit castindoncaster.com.