New theatre inspired by the Commedia dell’Arte
The Rude Mechanical Theatre Company has been creating original theatre inspired by the traditions and style of the Commedia dell’Arte since 1999. We work outdoors in the summer months mainly in villages and also a few towns across Southern England from Kent to Devon creating strong relationships with communities. We believe in the power of storytelling to bring communities together, giving a reason for people to be together and share in an experience which stimulates the mind, heals through laughter, and educates through thought-provoking subject-matter. Although our style is rooted in a genre which is hundreds of years old the stories always reflect what matters to people now. We also tour indoors occasionally in the winter and it is our aim to do more of this in the future.
Coming up this summer our new play –
The Commercial Traveller
Our new play for Summer 2017 is written and we have started casting! It is called The Commercial Traveller and will tour between Saturday 3rd June to Sunday 13th August to mainly villages and a few towns across the South of England from Kent to Devon. The list of venues will be added to this website in the next couple of weeks and tickets will be available from 1st March. So what is it all about. Here’s a quick introduction!
It is London, 1924, and rich and powerful tycoon and former East End barrow boy, Sir Arthur Cattermole, is not happy. His son, Gerald, whom he has spent his hard earned brass on to go to Eton, is in love with the girl next door, the beautiful Isabelle and daughter of hard up doctor, Cornelius Truss.
Love is a bunch of roses! Money is the thing!
So he sends Gerald to Africa to look after his cocoa business. The young lovers, of course, are heartbroken. The days pass like falling leaves and after a year no letters have come from Gerald. Isabelle is convinced he doesn’t love her anymore, or has found someone else, so decides she will become a nun. But the widowed doctor’s housekeeper, Elsie, who has virtually mothered Isabelle, has a plan. She knows a kind, good, gentle man, a commercial traveller, who will marry Isabelle and once married Sir Arthur will have no reason to keep Gerald away. Of course, Isabelle will have none of it at first, but Elsie persuades her mistress to trust her – that this complex knot of impossibilities will be unravelled. She will eventually be happy.
Then shockingly Elsie disappears into the London fog and is apparently found dead. Her devoted husband, Albert, Sir Arthur’s butler, is devastated. A month passes and the commercial traveller, Cecil Cornford, does indeed turn up and marries Isabelle – and then, apparently too late to marry her himself, Gerald returns from Africa incognito. His letters had been intercepted and he does still love her. Albert sets about unpicking the knot and bit by bit it is unravelled.
Funny, romantic and moving the play demonstrates the gritty determination to overcome an apparently unassailable problem through absolute love.