Tonight David Ireland Will Lecture, Box & Dance by Sandy Grierson
Perhaps the most notable aspect of the new company Greyscale is the astonishing array of young talent involved. Moreover, the contributing actors, directors and writers are all committed to erasing the boundaries around their job descriptions, with collaboration bringing creative contributions from unexpected angles.
The company won’t be sued under the Trades Descriptions Act for this piece: actor David Ireland will indeed be carrying out all the activities in the title, partly in response to fellow actor and author Sandy Grierson’s fascination with the legendary cult figure Arthur Cravan. This shadowy, intriguing man, a critic, boxer and worldwide adventurer was an eccentric shaggy dog story in human form, the truths and lies of his life forming a bizarre kind of cipher about modern living, the facts and fictions of which are often unfathomably interlinked. In the play Ireland claims to be Cravan’s descendant and engages in a picaresque narrative of his own. The nature of the story tells us much about this new company’s techniques.
‘This character’s impossible to get a handle on – which is what’s so amazing about seeing David coming to terms with him,’ Grierson says. ‘I think though that all this embodies an idea about stories – we see life as a single line, a progressive story where we travel along chronologically on a journey, learning things along the way. Actually, I think the truth is way more complex than that. Arthur Cravan’s inability to be just one person, embody one personality, is a far more common thing than we think.’
Oran Mor, Glasgow, Mon 5–Sat 10 Apr