Boxing gloves come off on stage
Simon Ward’s new play promises to pull no punches.
The Auckland actor and playwright is tackling a topical subject by playing a sportsman dealing with the ramifications of a violent outburst.
I did have to have that way of carrying myself. It’s definitely a shift for me to play that sort of person
vided the opportunity to explore what drives this kind of behaviour.
‘‘I think in certain codes there is bit of a mongrel mentality that is allowed to perpetuate and I think there are a lot of young guys who struggle with compartmentalising the way you behave on the field and the way you behave out in the world.’’
Mr Ward consulted a clinical psychologist to get the assessment details right and transformed himself physically for the role to better convey an athlete’s presence.
‘‘The director said it’s not like we see you in the ring going 12 rounds with someone, but you are combative all the time, hostile and reluctant.
‘‘I did have to have that way of carrying myself. It’s definitely a shift for me to play that sort of person.’’
He says the play promises to be confronting.
‘‘When you are dealing with violence you would be doing a disservice to pull your punches – so to speak.’’
Thumper is playing at The Basement for five nights, opening February 4.
Tough subject: Auckland actor and playwright Simon Ward wrote and is starring in Thumper, a play looking at the violent off-field actions of a sportsman.