February 15, 2019 by Perthshire Creates
Set in mid-1920’s Scotland, the General Strike is in full swing, when on a stifling Midsummer’s evening – while the protest explodes into dancing outside – Miss Julie, the Laird’s daughter, and John, the Laird’s manservant, reach out to each other. Set alight by the promise of revolution escalating outside, the pair grasp at the possibility of a different life until only one desperate choice remains.
With Zinnie Harris’ adaptation of August Strindberg’s text setting this classic story in Scotland during the mid-1920s and the sound design by MJ McCarthy being partially inspired by Scottish folk songs, this production of Miss Julie has increased relevance to Perth Theatre audiences.
Director Shilpa T-Hyland said:
“Zinnie Harris’ adaptation of Miss Julie immediately appealed to me; resetting this story of lust and social transgression to mid-1920s Scotland gives it a resonance with today that I find intriguing. The offstage mill workers who work for Julie’s father are in the middle of the strikes and social unrest which seemed to promise a new kind of world. Meanwhile in the basement kitchen Julie, the maid and the valet remain trapped by their social positions even as they begin to break the rules. Over the course of a single, sticky hot night we watch them struggling to truly understand each other and their different privileges and constraints, while yearning for something more.
“I’m hugely enjoying directing this fast-paced drama which contains all the love, cruelty and dangerous decision making which befits a hot midsummer night when the master’s away and anything could happen. I’m also delighted to be doing so as The Cross Trust Young Director Award recipient, with a fantastic production and creative team.”
Hiftu Quasem makes her Perth Theatre debut as Julie. She is joined by Helen Mackay (Christine), last seen in Perth Theatre in Cinderella in 2013 and Lorn MacDonald (John) who appeared in Perth Theatre’s production of Macbeth in 2013 while a student at RCS.
Miss Julie is in Perth Theatre’s Joan Knight Studio from Thursday 14 until Saturday 23 February, then touring to Tron Theatre, Glasgow and The Studio, Edinburgh.