Norwegian massacre inspires David Greig’s The Events at Mercury Theatre

The horror of the Anders Breivik massacre in Norway provides the inspiration behind David Greig’s new drama, The Events, which unfolds at Colchester’s Mercury Theatre next month.

The play, the Mercury’s latest Made in Colchester production, is directed by Dan Sherer (Bully Boy, 2015), and stars Josh Collins and Anna O’Grady plus a 30-strong community choir.

The Events, both timely and poignant, asks how a community can rebuild and recover after suffering such a horrific incident.

Claire is a priest. She has survived an atrocity – a mass shooting. Now she must understand it.

Inspired by the tragedy of the Norwegian summer camp massacre, in Utoya, committed by Anders Behring Breivik in 2011, The Events asks where goodness and hope can be found in the face of unbridled anger.

Rationality, reason and faith are all thrown into doubt in one of the decade’s most incendiary and important new plays, from multi award-winning playwright David Greig.

Playing the role of The Boy will be Josh Collins. Josh is returning to the Mercury after playing Eddie in the Made in Colchester production, Bully Boy in 2015, also directed by Sherer.

Josh’s other theatre credits include: Richard III (Almeida Theatre) and The Great Divide (Finborough Theatre).

Anna O’Grady is Claire. Anna’s theatre credits include: Sket (Park Theatre), Pygmalion (Bath Theatre Royal / UK Tour), Children of the Sun (National Theatre), Our Father, Time of My Life (Watford Palace Theatre), The Guinea Pig Club (York Theatre Royal) and Family Business (Watford Palace Theatre / Oxford Playhouse).

The Events is directed by the Mercury’s associate for new work and talent development, Dan Sherer, who received acclaim for his production of Sandi Toksvig’s Bully Boy at the Mercury in 2015.

Dan Sherer said: “The Events is a really challenging play, at once presenting the audience with a distinct moment in time – the attack on the choir – but at the same time asking how these attacks fit into our wider understanding of man’s development and his place in the universe.

“This vital project will unsettle, yes, but it will also imbue the absolute urgency of embracing the Other, and I’m privileged to be working with an incredibly talented team to bring this play to life.”

The Events will play at the Mercury Theatre Studio from June 2 to June 17.

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