“No one story is the same. No one mental health case is the same.” In Conversation with director Brittany Cope for GREEN IN BLUE
Interview by Brittany Kay
BK: Tell me a little bit about the show you directed – Green in Blue:
Brittany Cope: Daniel and Curtis are two strangers who were destined to meet on this one bench at Woodbine Beach. Both are going through a personal crises and both unknowingly end up helping each other. Curtis fails to help Daniel in his biggest time of need, which results in personal tragedy. After having thought about everything Daniel told him that night, Curtis is changed. He tries to express his gratitude to Daniel’s mother, only to be shut down. Daniel saved Curtis’ life, now Curtis must try to keep Daniel’s legacy alive.
BK: This play has been performed before? What has the development been, if any, from its first installment?
BC: This play was first performed as a staged reading last summer and then we [Greenlight Theatre] produced a workshop production in Windsor, ON last fall. As far as development goes, the major changes we’ve made this time around have taken place in little character nuances. We’ve focused on clarifying responses and making sure only the words that need to be said on stage are actually spoken. The second act has changed the most. We wanted to really understand these two characters [Daniel and Curtis] and their views on mental health; why they think the way they do about the main actions in the play.
BK: Why the title, Green in Blue?
BC: Green in Blue actually comes from a Miles Davis song titled Blue in Green which we use in the show. It was flipped around because of a line one of the characters says in the play (you’ll have to come see the production to figure it out!)
BK: Why this piece right now?
BC: This piece is important right now because it looks at mental health and suicide in a different light. With shows like 13 Reasons Why becoming so popular and inciting conversations about the “correct” ways to look at and discuss suicide, I think it is important to open ourselves up to new and different perspectives. No one story is the same, no one mental health case is the same, so instead of judging, I think it is important to be open to a wide scope of experiences.
BK: This is Greenlight Theatre’s first production. Are there future productions in the works? What sets you apart as a company?
BC: The goals for the future of Greenlight Theatre are simple: We want to continue creating new Canadian work by emerging artists. This mandate seems straight-forward and seems to be what we hear all the time in audition postings, but we really want to focus on the emerging artist aspect of it. We want to give these artists the opportunity to work at a professional level when they produce their work. Just because you’ve applied for several grants and never received one, doesn’t mean that your show doesn’t deserve to be seen. We want to foster those opportunities. As for the near future, we are hoping to put up another show later this fall and we will be hosting our annual Backyard Play-Reading Evening this summer to hear new work and hopefully find some collaborators for the future!
BK: What do you want audiences walking away with?
BC: I want our audiences to walk away with questions. I’d like everyone to question their own ability to listen to others instead of focusing solely on themselves. I think we all need to question our pre-conceived notions of how people “should” cope with the issues surrounding mental health and suicide. What would it be like in those final moments? The suicide in this play isn’t the climax of our story – it’s about the people who are affected by it.
BK: Describe the show in 3-5 words.
BC: Dark, quick, witty, thought-provoking.
by Duncan Rowe
Directed by: Brittany Cope
Featuring: Kevin Doe, Kasia Dyszkiewicz, Stacey Iseman and Duncan Rowe
Produced by: Emma Westray
Daniel and Curtis are two strangers who were destined to meet on this one bench at Woodbine Beach. Both are going through a personal crises and both unknowingly end up helping each other. Curtis fails to help Daniel in his biggest time of need, which results in personal tragedy. After having thought about everything Daniel told him that night, Curtis is changed. He tries to express his gratitude to Daniel’s mother, only to be shut down. Daniel has saved Curtis’ life, now Curtis tries to keep Daniel’s legacy alive.
Beach United Church
140 Wineva Ave., Toronto, ON
(a wheelchair accessible venue)
May 11-13, 2017 at 7:30pm
Tickets are $20 cash at the door, or you can buy $15 advanced tickets at http://greeninblue.bpt.me.