PLAY’S ISSUES HAVE A BITE
VICTORIA Park talent will be on show at Playlovers Theatre’s next production, a Pulitzer Prize-nominated play that featured Robin Williams on Broadway.
Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo is a comic drama about the lives of two US marines and an Iraqi translator who encounter a quick-witted tiger on the streets of war-torn Baghdad.
East Victoria Park resident Katie Toner will play the tiger with Carlisle resident Jaxon George and Cameron Leese, of Victoria Park, as the two US marines.
Written by Rajiv Joseph and directed by Andre Victor, the play’s tiger witnesses the puzzling absurdities of war and attempts to find meaning, forgiveness and redemption among the city’s ruins.
Toner said the character was quite cynical but also philosophical.
“The role is complex and sarcastic but melancholy,” she said.
“There is a great mix of comedy, sadness and frustration which makes it a fun character to play and a role I can really sink my teeth into.
“Because the character has so many subtle elements and ways of phrasing things to make reference to more than one event at a time, it will be difficult to be consistent in knowing the tiger’s intentions at all times.
“I also think the changes in mood will be challenging because I want to make the comedic, frustrated, sad and philosophical sides all as strong as each other, as well as being clear as possible in my intentions.”
Director Andre Victor described it as a play about life and death, in and around war.
“It’s comedy-based but written as a dramatic play. When you get the level of performance right, the comedy shines through without making fun of the show itself,” he said. “After looking at the script, I fell in love with the language of the play and how playwright Rajiv Joseph uses regular sentences in creative ways.”
Katie Toner plays a quick-witted tiger in BengalTigerattheBaghdadZoo with Jaxon George and Cameron Leese as two US marines.