In Conversation With Playwright, Morgan Sproxton
We caught up with playwright, Morgan Sproxton, ahead of the Young REP's production of A Picture Of You, which plays in The REP's Rehearsal Rooms from 4 - 6 April.
Tell us a bit about yourself…
I am a writer from Hull. I write about all kinds of subjects.
What first inspired you to start writing?
Growing up I didn't realise that people like me could be playwrights. History didn't show me many working class people who did that. Or many females for that matter. I did, however, know that my local newspaper employed people to write. So I got a job there instead. A perk of the job was using your press pass for lots of freebies and I could suddenly afford to see lots of theatre. Some of it annoyed me: people writing about my background and my experience who lived a million miles away from it. But some of it was inspiring and joyous and made me want to set up home and live in the theatre forever. I began to realise that plays don't have to be about you to be emotionally engaging and awe-inspiring. If they're good, they're good. So I joined a writers group attached to a theatre and it all started there.
Where did the idea for A Picture of You come from?
I read a very sad story in the local newspaper about a mum attending the year 6 leavers assembly for her son. Only her son had died in year 3. I wondered how it felt to see the other children growing up and changing whilst her boy was forever 7 years old. I also wondered how her other children felt as their big brother gradually became the younger sibling and how this might affect them when they became teenagers. I explored themes around this with the cast and they helped me to ensure all the characters are authentic rather than token young people.
What can the audience expect from the piece?
It's an emotionally charged, fast-paced and (hopefully) funny look at possibly the least effective house party a teenager has ever held.
How would you describe the play in 3 words?
Moving. Energetic. Hopeful.