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Rehearsal diary – Fabulous Creatures

It’s week four of rehearsals for Fabulous Creatures, a new play by Emily Louizou and Quentin Beroud. Our three monsters, played by Jazz Jenkins, Hannah van der Westhuysen and Kate Newman, explore their dressing room in an improvisation exercise led by director Emily Louiziou. Siren, Charybdis and Scylla, three notorious monsteresses in Homer’s Odyssey, are thought to be extraordinary, unnatural and out of place in the human world. But here, at their Monstrous Cabaret (‘no gods or humans allowed; only everything else in between’) they are at home, safe and removed from the world of mortals. Or so they have been for thousands of years. 

As director Emily Louizou guides the cast through Fabulous Creatures, movement director Ioli Filippakopoulou explores the monsters’ dances and physicality. Composer Irene Skylakaki workshops her original songs with the group, and designer Ismini Papaioannou fills the space with set pieces, props and costumes. The rehearsal process is a testament to Collide Theatre’s dynamic, collaborative approach to theatre-making. 

Our rehearsal room – like the world of Fabulous Creatures – flows between lightness and humour, and challenging discussions about social issues which emerge in the play. Conversations about violence towards women and exclusion of those who are different are as pertinent now as they were in Ancient Greece. However, Fabulous Creatures is not only a story of suffering. It is also a story of empowerment, of teamwork and of revenge. 

It has been a joy to be involved in the production so far, and to be part of such a bold, exciting project. I can’t wait for the show to continue taking shape in the coming weeks. 

Written by Costi Levy, Assistant Director

Fabulous Creatures is on at the Arcola Theatre from 22 May – 15 June 2024. Tickets are available here.

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