Thursday 2nd & Friday 3rd August, 21.00 – 22.00

 

Gestalt Opera

 

 

A radical re-envisioning of the Rumpelstiltskin tale, fusing courtly love, psychotherapy and sadomasochism.

When a stoic marriage counselor is tasked with curing the delusions of the Royal bride Daisy, she discovers a darker side to the nuptials that challenges the very foundations of her practice. Ruined by the fear that her first born heir will be abducted by an aberrant cave-dwelling goblin, Daisy’s delusions are fantastical, yet firmly rooted in the fissures found when reality shatters love’s great dream: her husband is a bastard. Or at least, this was the initial interpretation. As the therapist begins to find Daisy’s tales more compelling, she becomes trapped in a triangle between guarding the safety of the Princess, the safety of the baby, and exposing the Prince as a psychotic tyrant and cause of Daisy’s pain. However, for some pain is pleasure, and as the difference between reality and fantasy starts to become more and more obscure, the therapist has to confront the possibility of an incredible truth: that Daisy’s delusions aren’t as intangible as they first appear.

 

Genesis

 

The Daisy Chain is the first production of the recently formed collective Gestalt Arts, who united through their mutual love of the absurd and the transgressive. The work received a workshop performance by the LSO as part of their Soundhub Showcase series at St. Luke’s in June.

 

When a stoic marriage counsellor is tasked with curing the delusions of the royal bride Daisy, she discovers a darker side to the nuptials that challenges the very foundations of her practice. The poor girl is ruined by the fear that her first born heir will be abducted by a curious cave-dwelling goblin; her delusions are fantastical, yet firmly rooted in the fissures found when reality shatters love’s great dream: her husband is a bastard.

Or at least, this was the initial interpretation. As the therapist begins to find Daisy’s tales more compelling, she becomes trapped in a triangle between guarding the safety of the Princess, the safety of the baby, and exposing the Prince as a psychotic tyrant and cause of Daisy’s pain. However, for some

 

www.gestaltarts.com

 


 
 

The Daisy Chain

Music: Toby Young


Words: Thomas Conroy


Stage Direction: Ruth Mariner


Musical Direction: Stephen Craigen


Set Design: Jayne O’Hanlon


 


Daisy: Sera Baines


Therapist: Elizabeth Graham


Prince: Rod Morris


Creature: Joanna Foote


Miller: Nick Scott


Patrons: Oskar McCarthy, Eleanor Hemmens,


 


Toby Young (born 1990) is a composer and singer from London. In 2010 he graduated as a choral scholar from King’s College,


 


Cambridge, where he studied music with Robin Holloway and Colin Matthews. Since winning numerous competitions, most notably the International ABRSM Composition Competition (2009) and the Guardian/BBC Proms Young Composer of the Year (2006), Toby has been much in demand, both in the UK and abroad, with works being performed at numerous prestigious venues such as the Royal Albert Hall, Birmingham’s Symphony Hall, and the Cadogan Hall, by renowned ensembles and orchestras including the LSO, RPO, Fretwork, Aurora Orchestra, and Britten Sinfonia. Many works have also been broadcast on BBC Radio 3. In 2009 Toby was Composer-in-residence at the University of Perugia, and from 2012 onwards Toby will be in residence with the LSO as part of the new SoundHub programme.


 


Thomas Conroy studied English Literature and Sociology at the University of Brighton, and is a member of the National Youth Film Academy, the South London Theatre company and the Tower Theatre Company. He is currently developing future projects with Gestalt Arts and a number of production companies in the UK.


 


Ruth Mariner studied Fine Art at AIB, before being awarded an excellence scholarship to study Music at Goldsmiths, University of London. During her time there she specialised in cultural theory and composition, directing a number of musical performances in a multimedia installation format. She is currently studying for an MPhil in musicology at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, and writes for several music publications, most notably, Classical Music Magazine, London Bach Society’s journal Bach Notes and Timeout Hong Kong.


 


Stephen Craigen graduated from Cambridge in 2012, having read Music at Trinity College. In September Stephen will join the Guildhall School of Music and Drama on a scholarship as a postgraduate horn student, where he will study with Jeff Bryant and benefit from financial assistance from both the Musicians Benevolent Fund and the Countess of Munster Musical Trust.


 


As a conductor, Stephen has maintained an active presence on the Cambridge music scene since winning a Cambridge University Musical Society (CUMS) Conducting Scholarship for the academic year 2010/11, taking a special interest in contemporary music. Jayne O’Hanlon studied Drawing at Camberwell College of Arts (University of the Arts, London) and graduated in 2010 specialising in site-specific performance art. She has since been working in events production. Her portfolio of work involves animation, film, sculpture and performance.