Gifts of War
Synopsis Gifts of War is a one-woman play in three short acts. A mysterious woman bides her time in the guest bathroom of an Athenian Palace, while beyond the door, a party rages. Wives of the great and good in Greece are celebrating their husbands' victory over their Trojan foes - unaware that Nemesis is planning to fix more than just her make-up.
Cast & Duration This play has a cast of one female & lasts 25 minutes.
Production History Originally commissioned by Menagerie Theatre for the Hotbed Festival in 2000, the play was subsequently produced at the Latchmere Theatre, London as part of a double-bill with Naomi Wallace's The Retreating World', under the umbrella title of Two Into War. Two Into War was subsequently revived on a national tour. Gifts of War was produced by Menagerie Theatre at The Latchmere Theatre, London 2003. This production was directed by Paul Bourne, designed by Idit Nathan, with music by Andrew Lovett
Nemesis ............................Jasmine Hyde
Fraser's View Gifts of War began as a commission for the inaugural Hotbed Festival, in 2000. The brief was a ten-minute play for one actor. As part of the Festival, I led workshops for other playwrights on the joys of these constraints - and then submitted a thirty-minute, three-act script that takes place in the ancient past and in the present-simultaneously. Ah.... theatre
Rachel Aspinwall played a huge role in helping me clarify the script, and was fantastic at developing a role which is both funny and deadly. By the time Jasmine Hyde took on the part for a national tour of studio spaces, I had discovered a name for the character: Nemesis. We also paired Gifts of War with the Retreating World - an incredibly simple, moving, piece by Naomi Wallace - to make the double-bill, Two Into War.
Gifts of War is one of pieces I am most proud of, despite being so brief. Nemesis is a part which has to be rediscovered by anyone with the chops to take it on. And it is funny too!
Future 'Roll up, roll up...'
'Wittily conceived & imaginatively directed by Paul Bourne, (Gifts of War) builds effectively to its chilling conclusion' Robert Shore, Time Out
'Fraser Grace's admirable piece about a Trojan woman (the excellent Rachel Aspinwall) - with too many sorrows to drown'. Kate Kellaway, The Observer
'This is phenomenally enjoyable stuff...in Paul Bourne's spot-on production, Rachel Aspinwall has a ball with her role...Gradually and chillingly however, we realise that her graphic accounts of the fall of Troy couldn't possibly have been gleaned second-hand. Absolutely compelling theatre'. Fiona Mountford, Evening Standard
'...a subtle masterpiece - Grace's play and this superb actress (Rachel Aspinwall) never put a foot wrong. Warmly recommended'. John Thaxter, What's On
'This subtle, slick monologue from the pen of Fraser Grace...is a perfectly timed and poignant piece of work by director Paul Bourne, and executed with a deft touch by Jasmine Hyde...You'd have to go a long way to better this production'. Harry Mottram, What's On Stage
'Two Into War :This extraordinary moving double bill...A theatrically excellent and morally bracing event'. Paul Taylor, The Independent