See how this post-apocalyptic world of scrap metal motorbikes and warring giants is brought to life on stage.
Director Gregory Doran has combined the world of the Trojan War with Mad Max inspired design to create a Troilus and Cressida like no other. With motorbikes on stage, warriors on stilts, and scenes of brutal hand-to-hand combat, how did it all come together?
The bikes used are replica Honda SS50 built with a 50cc engine, as the technical brief for our Props team required an adult bike but with a small engine. The visual design brief from Niki Turner was to ‘Mad Max’ them, and the team scoured the internet for inspiration. It then fell to Kevin Neville in Engineering to use his creative skill and imagination to adapt the bikes as we see them today, including:
Cutting and modifying the exhaust
Replacing one of the seats with a horse saddle
Welding on custom-made cladding
Dressing them with vacuum cleaner hoses and tubes, a horse skull and gas mask
Finally, the scenic painters finished them off with a suitable rusty paint finish to give them that distressed look.
Terry King, the production’s Fight Director, worked on the show from the very beginning and throughout rehearsals. As with all productions, once the show makes it to the stage, there is a 10-15 minute fight call before each performance during which the actors go through the fights to ensure they are fresh in their minds.
Ajax, played by Theo Ogundipe, enters the play wearing stilts that allow him to tower over everyone else in the scene. However, come the fights, he is back to his normal size, giving him greater mobility on the battlefield.