by debbie tucker green,
directed by Keith Swainston
A crime has been committed. The victim has a choice to make.
First performed at the Royal Court last year, hang is a three-hander that runs for 70 minutes and simmers all the way to the boil.
Three (there are no names just numbers) is a woman who has suffered some traumatising crime against her family. It’s never clear what, but it’s had serious, long-lasting implications. Now she has the chance – the power – to determine the perpetrator’s fate. Not his sentence, but whether he lives or dies – and, if he dies, by what grisly method?
She has been invited to meet two officials who will help her decide. They are not police officers but paper-shuffling bureaucrats. The reason for this meeting becomes clear very gradually as witheld information generates a certain suspense.
The writing is poised and poetic, with pitchblack humour. We are asked what our response would be to the worst kind of horror: would we sanction reciprocal viciousness or not?
The play is set in what the writer calls the ‘nearly now’, and takes place in a clinically non-descript meeting room.
The dialogue is stylised, with floating halfsentences tripping over each other from one character to the next, letting us hear interrupted thought. This will be very difficult to learn, requiring the actors to know not only their own lines, but a good proportion of the other actors’ too. Like learning a three part harmony. It’s not going to be easy, but it will be great fun!
The characters do not have names but are numbered:
- One: female
- Two: male or female
- Three: female
Age: Character age does not matter. Casting will depend on appearance and how well the actors audition.
Scripts: Available from the Box Office from October 28
Further information: Keith Swainston on 07799 803623 or