We pressed “PAUSE TIME” on Natasha’s busy rehearsal schedule so she could have a chat with us about how The Time Machine’s rehearsal process is going. With under one week to go and lots of sold out performances already, book now before it’s too late!
The production has had a previous life at The London Library, tell us a bit about the show’s journey through time/the last 6 months.
NR: The show was written in October 2019 by Jonathan after many conversations with the Wellcome Centre For Ethics. By the time we were rehearsing in early February, these predictions were already coming true. We were becoming more and more aware of this as the show opened as a site specific piece at the Library, with the pandemic closing the live version of the production there early. We have now created a digital version of the play which will be performed live over Zoom – ironically Jonathan had written ‘Zoom’ as the noise the characters make to time travel many months ago!
Our version of The Time Machine talks a lot about issues we are facing currently, how have you navigated the emotional impact of the show?
NR: For us as theatre makers it has been an emotional process just being in a rehearsal room again, even if it is a digital one. We have trimmed and changed certain small moments in response to the situation today – and introduced a ‘choose your own ending’ element depending how the audience feel.
You’re working with four Time Travellers, are they always on time for rehearsals?!
NR: We do always have to be on the lookout for people sliding into parallel realities. Luckily, they now all have their time machines which have been posted to them, so they can travel back if they do end up in the wrong timeline.
Can our audiences trust that they won’t be transported into another timeline?
NR: I’m afraid we can’t guarantee that – there are moments in the show that certain audience members will receive an invitation to an alternative reality and should they choose to accept it, they will alter the course of the show they see.
What’s it like in the Zoom wormhole?
NR: Psychedelic. We have spent today building a whole audience digital disco (complete with club-goers with discoball skin).
If you could travel back and forth through time, where would you go?
NR: I’d like to go back in time and meet my grandmother – my mum’s mum. She was a very cool writer with hornrimmed glasses who sounds like she had a great sense of humour. Or I’d like to go back to summer 2019 and go to the pub!
What do you think the future of theatre looks like?
NR: I could just show you if it’s easier? Rub your hands together, think of the date you want to travel to, hold the time machine and shout ZOOM.
Tell us about your favourite section or exchange in the show, without giving too much away!
NR: That audiences are experiencing multiple versions of the show in different digital universes.
Finally, why should people join us for The Time Machine LIVE?
NR: To see what the Wellcome Centre predicted back in 2019 and how it relates to our world now. And to come on an adventure from a film noir version of the past, to Studio 54, and all the way to the year 2300!
Join The Time Machine LIVE on Zoom between 27 May – 21 June 2020.