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  • Character traits

Character Traits

Using a physical idea to highlight an aspect of the interviewee.

Production: Can We Talk About This?

Scene: Ann Cryer

Ann Cryer, a Labour politician, was the first politician to raise issues of forced marriage in the Houses of Parliament.

Dissecting the scene:

What effect do the teacup and saucer have on the scene? The performer playing Ann Cryer both uses and is manipulated by the male performer; what does this say about her character?


The teacup and saucer give the scene a feeling of domesticity; Ann is semi-retired and the interview took place in her home. The feeling of being at home is heightened by the male performer acting as Ann’s ever-changing armchair. As the male performer seamlessly shifts the female performer’s positioning, it brings life to sections of the text like: ‘What do you do when you’re in that position?’ Furthermore, the manipulation of the female performer and her manipulation of the male performer represent the ever-present and delicate tensions in politics between the elected (elevated) member, their supporters, and their detractors (i.e. those who would have you removed from your seat); all the while, everyone is balancing (toeing) the party line.