Scenes for Survival | Larchview

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18 Jun 2020

News Story

Following a breach of the nation’s lockdown rules, one of the government’s most senior scientific advisers is forced to practice for his groveling public apology in a fictitious new short sharp drama. As he struggles to justify his actions, he slowly comes to terms with what he has done, and the horrifying scale of his mistake becomes clear.

Featuring Mark Bonnar, written by Rob Drummond, and directed by Jack Nurse.

Produced by National Theatre of Scotland, in association with BBC Scotland, Screen Scotland, BBC Arts’ Culture in Quarantine project with support from Hopscotch Films.

"The great thing about Scenes for Survival is it manages to still feel like theatre. There is no audience in the room when these actors are performing, no immediate interaction between them, no chance to clap at the end. But this is different from TV or film. Because the actors are in the same situation we all are. They are self filming in isolation. We are watching in isolation. They stare down the camera at us. Almost longingly. There’s an intimacy to it and an honesty that is completely different from other digital contact. And intimacy and honesty are really what we are all desperate for just now I think.

I wrote this piece in response to Scotland’s chief medical officer, Catherine Calderwood’s resignation after breaking lockdown rules. The day after I handed in Dominic Cummings hit the news and this piece was forever designed to be misattributed as a response to his story. That’s not a problem really though - the piece is not directly about anyone at all. It’s more about the idea of authority, truth, hypocrisy and public scrutiny. Should those in charge be held to different standards than the rest of us? Are we more outraged at hypocrisy than the actual infraction? Do we want to hear the truth and how would we even know if we had heard it?"

ROB DRUMMOND, writer


Scenes for Survival Hardship Fund

The Scenes for Survival Hardship Fund is a fundraising campaign launched by the National Theatre of Scotland in association with the Federation of Scottish Theatre, the McGlashan Charitable Trust and leading Scottish Theatre organisations, to raise money for those in the sector who have been hardest hit financially and are experiencing drastic economic and emotional hardship.

All donations to this fund will go directly to provide support for those most impacted within Scotland, be they actors, writers, creatives, musicians, technicians or any others within our industry.

A sector-wide call out with information and details of how to apply for support from the SFS Hardship Fund will be was launched in August 2020. Applications to the fund closed on Friday 4th September. The McGlashan Charitable Trust are dispersing the money raised and will communicate funding decisions no later than Friday 9th October.

We would be grateful if you would consider making a small donation to the Scenes for Survival Hardship Fund. Thank you for your support.

Donate Here

Audio Described Version Coming Soon

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