So I found myself back in the Duke of York's watching Dr Faustus again last night - there was a pair of £15 tickets on the front row so I couldn't resist. Following the performance, there was Q&A with director Jamie Lloyd, Kit Harington plus Craig Stein, Brian Gilligan and Garmon Rhys.
Chairs were set up on the tiny bit of stage that protrudes from underneath the safety curtain behind which the clean-up operation could be heard. Jamie Lloyd said he felt for the stage management team who had the big job of cleaning up after each performance (puke of various colours, soil, flour, poo, blood and food).
Everyone was in a relaxed and jovial mood which made for an often amusing discussion. Here are some of the highlights:
Jamie and Kit were asked about casting:
JL said he has a list of plays he wants to do and he wanted to work with Kit so he sent him a couple of things to look at one of which was Dr Faustus.
KH said if he reads a script and then wants to immediately read it again then he wants to do it. He likes juicy, wacky and weird roles: 'I love weird shit'. In Dr Faustus, he loved the contemporary sections of the play spliced with the Marlowe original.
How do you learn your lines and approach the role?
KH said that JL likes the actors 'off book' and he looked at how much there was in the script and thought 'oh shit' so he booked a cottage in Wales, cut off from everything and 'spent four days pummelling it'. Then there was one of those pauses when everyone is thinking it but no one wants to say until JL kindly stepped in quipped 'but what about the lines?' Much laughter at that, naturally.
Once he recovered he went on to say how he didn't know what the premise would be. He saw a magician friend and thought it would be like the poster (pictured). But then JL told him that Dr Faustus is just in his room, it's all in his head and everyone is in their pants. So he approached it as if he going through a psychotic episode, that he is on some big, bad trip.