Plays Directory : Scenes from an Execution

The information below is intended to give you a brief guide to the show and highlight some of the other The Mandy Network members who have also been involved in this show.

  • Author
    Howard Barker
  • Written
    1984
  • Setting
    17th Century Venice
  • Overview
    How can an artist reconcile her integrity with the demands of the world she lives in? In Howard Barker’s scintillating 1984 play, the role and responsibility of art in society, and the pressures brought to bear upon it by politics and patronage, are dazzlingly dramatised.

    In 17th-century Venice Galactia, a painter, is commissioned by the Doge to create a work depicting the Battle of Lepanto. But while he hopes for a piece of tub-thumping, glorifying patriotism, Galactia is set on representing the full horror of war. Beset by the arguments of rival, more commercially pliable painters — one of whom is her young married lover — by the machinations of an influential critic, and above all those of Church and State, she must ultimately choose between a path of compromise or resolve to uphold her principles — perhaps at the cost of her voice being silenced and her work remaining unseen forever.

    Strikingly illustrating the way in which mass slaughter can be spun by those in positions of power, the play has a renewed timeliness. And it addresses the tension between the esoteric and the mundane astutely and often with an earthy directness. “I will negotiate with power because I have to,” Galactia tells her anxious daughter. “I will lick the Doge’s crevices if need be, because he has power. I am not wholly an idiot and I like to eat and drink as well as you.” The piece’s central character is compellingly complex and vivid: a middle-aged woman who is ferociously intelligent, courageous, pungently sexual without, as her lover points out, being conventionally beautiful, generous of spirit, filled with anger and humanity.

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5 known characters

1 known roles


Connected mandy members:

Margaret Grimoldby
2020, Galactia
The Drum, Theatre Royal Plymouth
Phoebe Alice Ritchie
2017, Multiple characters
Baxter Theatre, Cape Town
Nala Hermeziel
2017, Supporta
The Drum TRP
Lauren Blackwell
2017, Supporta
Baxter Theatre
Ryan John
Ryan John
Actor
2017, Lasagne/Soldier
Theatre Royal
David Phillips-Peters
2015, Prodo/Sordo/Gaoler
Lace Market Theatre, Nottingham
Billy Potts
Billy Potts
Lighting Technician
2015, Lighting Designer
Ravenfield Theatre
Dane Clements
2015, Prodo/Sailor
Ravensfield Theatre
Michael Priestley
2015, Carpeta
The Mabel Tylecote Building
Alexandra Bradford
Alexandra Bradford
Deputy Stage Manager
2012, ASM
The Unicorn Theatre
Andreea Hluscu
2012, Gina Rivera
Luke Jenkins
Luke Jenkins
Actor
2012, Urgentino
Unicorn Theatre
Anne Thomson
Anne Thomson
Costume Maker
2012, Costume maker/assistant
Dominic Myerscough
2012, Prodo/Sordo/Man in the Next Cell/1st Sailor
Ian Hallard
Ian Hallard
Actor
2012, Sordo
Fraz Roughton
Fraz Roughton
Costume Designer
2012, Designer
The Unicorn Theatre - London
Danielle Grant
Danielle Grant
Wardrobe Assistant
2012, Maker
Unicorn Theatre London
Anne Thomson
Anne Thomson
Costume Maker
2012, Costume maker/assistant/dresser
Richard Booth
Richard Booth
Technical Manager
2012, Automation Operator/Stage Technician
Lyttelton Theatre
Eva Solveig
Eva Solveig
Actor
2011, Sketchbook
Studio 1, Rose Bruford College