We chatted to Shannon about starring in the world premiere of The Seven Pomegranate Seeds at the Rose Theatre.
Hi Shannon – could you explain what we can expect from The Seven Pomegranate Seeds? You can expect to be gloriously surprised and asked to question the tales we are told in myth and indeed in the world around us. As much as it takes the seven Greek myths as a starting point; what Melly has shaped with Colin’s fantastic words will take the audience on one hell of a journey. The audience should hopefully see that although seven mythical women have been used as the reference, there is something incredibly human and relatable about the stories told on stage.
What was it about Colin Teevan’s play that caught your attention? I enjoyed the unique structure of it. The fact that these were seemingly seven separate stories but interwoven in a way that invited you to join the dots between each tale. Also, the distinct style of each scene; structurally and rhythmically was exciting. I think what is most fascinating is that Colin’s writing lends itself to so many possibilities in terms of staging and actually putting the words on its feet. I knew it would be a meaty text to delve into!
What do you think continues to fascinate people about the stories of the likes of Persephone and Medea? The epic nature of these stories is dramatically intriguing and I think appeals to everyone’s need to be shocked and entertained. I also think that at the root of these stories is quite a universally and deeply relatable exploration of trauma (in its myriad of forms) being written down and dramatised. There is something powerful and unifying in the release of these huge human feelings that often come out of these plays.
How does it feel to be bringing the play to the Rose Theatre? I have loved being at the Rose! It’s my first time being here and it’s beautiful being by the water. The stage is also such a wonderful space to be playing in; its got the right amount of breadth and intimacy.
How have you found working on the production so far?It’s been a joy! Everyone I’ve encountered in the room and out of it have had such a positive impact on my experience (and have worked incredibly hard). Melly has guided me with a keen eye and great warmth, enthusiasm and an incredible imagination! Niamh has been the perfect partner and I continue to learn from her each night. I wouldn’t want to be doing this show with anyone else.
What are you most looking forward to about audiences experiencing this play? I hope that audiences laugh and cry in equal measure! Melly often uses the word ‘catharsis’ in reference to Greek tragedies. That is what I hope the audience feel when experiencing this play. A sense of release.
By Emma Clarendon
The Seven Pomegranate Seeds continues to play at the Rose Theatre until the 20th November.