The Finn-Brit Players and Passport Theatre Company are very pleased to announce their decision to work together on a Helsinki production of the Melancholy Play by Sarah Ruhl. Auditions will be held in June 2016 and performances are currently scheduled for September.
The Melancholy Play by Sarah Ruhl is a strange play that sits somewhere between farce and comedy, between poetry and magical realism, between a barber’s shop drama and theatre of the absurd.
Tilly is melancholy. She is depressed and longing, alluring and unashamed. As a theatre critic wrote, “She makes her unhappiness into this sexy thing.” Tilly’s therapist, Lorenzo, wants her to take pills, but instead falls madly in love with her. In fact, it seems that every one Tilly meets falls madly in love with her melancholy. Frank, her tailor, hems her trousers, which leads to romance. Frances, her hairdresser, and Joan, Frances’ lesbian partner, also become infatuated. Everyone feasts off her melancholy and falls in love with her – until she becomes happy herself.
That happiness throws the world out of whack: everyone else is experiencing turmoil in their lives. Now it is they who are unhappy: Frances becomes so melancholy that she turns into an almond. The streets are full of them – of almonds that used to be people. With Frances’ very existence in question, Tilly, Lorenzo, Joan and Frank must go and find Frank’s long-lost twin sister Frances. But how does one become so melancholy that they turn into an inanimate object? What will happen when Tilly and her friends travel to the almond state?
To find the answer, we hope you will join us in 2016 either as part of the cast and crew or as an audience member.
The Finn-Brit Players is a Helsinki-based amateur drama society whose origins date back to the early 1950s. Since becoming active again in 1981, the Players have staged over sixty productions including musicals, murder mysteries, classics, comedies, Shakespeare, children’s entertainment and drama.
The Passport Theatre company is a new equity-waiver theatre group, based in Easthampton, MA. Passport brings new plays to both Western Massachusetts and Finland, performing original works alternately in both countries. The company’s inaugural production was the Ryhmäteatteri version of Gogol’s The Overcoat, performed in Turners Falls in 2012.