Terry Pratchett’s Mort for Perth
DEATH comes to us all – but in the case of Roleystone Theatre’s November / December 2017 production of Terry Pratchett’s Mort, he offers the title character a job.
Dying of Alzheimer’s in early 2015, Pratchett was the UK’s best-selling author of the 1990s, selling more than 85 million books worldwide in 37 languages.
In Terry Pratchett’s Mort, adapted by Stephen Briggs from the popular Discworld novel, the character of Death feels it’s time for a change and chooses an apprentice to take over the job for him.
He finds Mort at a small career fair, giving him board, lodging and free use of the company horse – but trouble begins when Mort, instead of collecting a princess’ soul, kills her would-be assassin and changes history.
“Mort is the story of a young man coming to terms with everyone's mortality and finding the bright sparks of comedy, love and anger of a life well-lived,” director Bradley Towton said.
“It was the first Pratchett book I read, given to me by a friend, and while I was sceptical at first, it changed my appreciation of literature forever. Dozens of books later, I am still hooked!
“When I was given the opportunity to direct my second show, Mort was a clear and obvious choice to me.
“The subtle humour, beautiful characters and inspired storytelling all combine to make Terry Pratchett my favourite author and I feel proud to put on one of his shows to honour his memory.”
Involved in theatre for the past 10 years, Towton studied Performing Arts at Curtin University and appeared in several Stage Door School shows before joining Roleystone Theatre to perform in Much Ado About Nothing, Avenue Q, Peter Pan and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
He has also appeared in Garrick Theatre productions of A Lady Mislaid, Project Macbeth and Love is a Noun and scored acting awards for his roles in She Was Only a Miller's Daughter and Footrot Flats at Roleystone Theatre.
Previously, Towton directed Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors – but Terry Pratchett’s Mort has provided different challenges.
“Finding the right voices has been interesting,” he said. “We have had many long nights perfecting ‘the leaden tones of Death’ and ‘giggling threateningly’.
“We’re now working on technical things such as glowing blue eyes, swords as thin as a whisper and a flash and a bang as Death is summoned into an octogram.”
Terry Pratchett’s Mort plays at 8pm November 24, 25, 29, December 1 and 2. Tickets are $20, $15 concession – book on 6396 1557 or at www.roleystonetheatre.com.au.
Roleystone Theatre is located at 587 Brookton Highway, Roleystone, opposite the Croyden Road junction.
Images: The inept wizard Igneous Cutwell (Shannon Allender, left) and Princess Keli (Michelle Ezzy) in Terry Pratchett’s Mort; Death (Sam Barnett, left) selects a young apprentice (Seren Moulds) to take over his job; and Becky and James Hunt as the Vizier and King Olerve.