Stage set for soapy se­rial shenani­gans

Kapi-Mana News - - ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT -

Ti­tahi Bay res­i­dent Kaaryn Cater, who has a long as­so­ci­a­tion with Porirua Lit­tle The­atre, helps ex­pose the dirt be­hind a soap in Stage­craft’s pro­duc­tion of Se­rial Killers, which opens to­mor­row at Gryphon The­atre.

Writ­ten by James Grif­fin ( Out­ra­geous For­tune, The Almighty John­sons, Sione’s Wed­ding), Se­rial Killers fol­lows the lives of the script writ­ers of fic­tional med­i­cal soap Heart of Hearts. The play won awards and rave re­views and de­buted as a tele­vi­sion se­ries in 2005.

Cater, who plays scriptwriter Sally and who in real life works as an aca­demic ad­viser at Whi­te­ria Polytech­nic, says the play draws on a po­ten­tial con­flict be­tween writ­ers and ac­tors.

‘‘The stage and screen students I work with un­der­stand the re­spon­si­bil­ity they have for bring­ing a writer’s words to life, and they recog­nise that an ac­tor’s in­ter­pre­ta­tion of a role may not com­pletely match the writer’s orig­i­nal in­ten­tion.

‘‘Writ­ers have to live with this and ac­tors must ac­cept that the writer re­mains the ul­ti­mate cre­ator in the part­ner­ship.’’

In the show, as Cater and the other writ­ers scheme to kill off the an­noy­ing male lead, the tables are turned when the ac­tor de­cides he doesn’t want to be writ­ten off and takes con­trol.

‘‘While on one level it’s just plain funny, the tables are also turned on the usual rhetoric of fic­tion in­flu­enc­ing re­al­ity from the per­spec­tive of the viewer. Here, the ac­tor’s on-screen per- sona be­comes more real than life it­self. It’s an in­ter­est­ing skew on our in­creas­ing ap­petite for TV and video en­ter­tain­ment.’’

Se­rial Killers,

Bite me: Kaaryn Cater with one of her ‘‘lethal’’ col­leagues, played by Alan Carabott, in Se­rial Killers, a satire about TV soap writ­ers.

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