Whispers from the Wings

The Sainsbury's Dip

May 30, 2013

Titus good luck cardTitus is now in its final week of previews. Daily we're changing things, replacing and adding new things, but as of Wednesday the play will be in 'lock down'. As of Thursday, press night, we will stick with whatever blocking/staging we have.

Actors are often their own toughest critics. At college, I had a teacher who, whenever I went and said to him: 'I don't understand why I'm doing this,' 'Why am I moving here? I don't have a reason to move here, on his line, I'm stomping right over everything he's saying.' 'I hate this!' this teacher would say to me: 'You're going through 'The Sainsbury's Dip'.

Apparently 'The Sainsbury's Dip' is when an actor feels they want to give up their day job and work at Sainsbury's.

 This statement is severely generalised and prejudiced against people who enjoy working at Sainsbury's. I don't think said teacher intended for the phrase to target supermarket retailers and/or their staff, he simply wanted to highlight how sometimes frustrated actors can feel any job – Sainsbury's, London Zoo - might be more rewarding.

There isn't a right answer. My interpretation of Lavinia was always going to be different to that of Janet Suzman, Sonia Ritter and Vivien Leigh because our make-up's not the same. It will also be different to future Lavinias because fashions change and half the challenge is to make Titus attractive to a modern audience.

Questions I've been wrestling with this week:

How close does Lavinia get to making Tamora reconsider? What else could she have said?

Why does she wait so long to name her offenders? Is it just shame?

Does she actually want revenge? How does she feel when she finally gets it? Is relief enough?

Why does she choose life?

And does she deserve to die?

by Rose Reynolds  |  3 comments

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May 31, 5:36pm
Catherine Coulthard

A small group of us went to watch you on 20/05 - we were utterly in awe. We sat in he front row and were completely mesmerised by the performance. I wrote a blog review here:


My 14 year old wants to go again. Thank you so much for such riveting performances. Loved every minute!
Catherine x

Jun 4, 6:35pm
Rose Reynolds

Thank you, Catherine.

Your 14 year old sounds like she's got gumption and a stomach of iron! Good on her.

Great blog. I've relayed your 'boys you'd want your daughter to date' comment back to Perry and Jonny. You'll be happy to know they're lovely blokes but I'm still not a hundred percent I'd allow them out after witnessing what they do to Lavinia!

All the best,

Sep 11, 12:23am
Helen Lawson

Dear Rose - have just returned home from tonight's show ... wow. I'm such an analytical creature but all cynicism flew out of the exit! I was stunned by your utterly natural performance. I think I stopped breathing! I forgot it was 'just' a play. You portrayed Lavinia's suffering in a mesmerisingly convincing manner. I believed you. Congratulations to you and the rest of the cast and crew! Helen

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