Adrian Osmond | DYING FOR IT
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No job, no money, no hope: unemployed and poverty-stricken Semyon has driven his long-suffering wife Masha to distraction and himself to the depths of despair. There’s only one thing left to do – end it all as quickly as possible!  However, Semyon’s attempts to ensure a quick exit become increasingly problematic – when word gets out of his plan, he finds himself inundated with visitors begging him to die on their behalf.


Director Adrian Osmond

Designer Helen Allingham

Assistant Designer Lynsey MacDonald

Lighting Designer Laura McNiven

Sound Designer Jennifer Walker


& Cultural Consultant Denis Boyarr

Production Manager Lynfryn Mackenzie

Stage Manager Jane Gordon

DSM Francesca Branch

ASM David MacMorris

ASM Barry McDonald

TSM Louise Marr

Semyon Ross Currie

Masha Natalie McConnon

Serafima Charlene Boyd

Alexander Jeremiah Reynolds

Margarita Melody Grove

Yegor Oliver Poole

Aristarkh Harry Gooding

Kleopatra Sharon Young

Yelpidy Darren Lightbody

Viktor Laurie Brown

Stepan Fraser Boyle

Oleg Sion Young

Violin Alex Smith

Accordion Megan Henderson


Erdman’s biting satire on the human condition was banned by Stalin before its first performance.  The play may hit many profound targets, but it also contains all the elements for a top-notch farce, not least a sprawling house that enables numerous entrances and exits.  And so, as with any farce, it’s essential to plan ahead and position all the doors and windows in precisely the right places.

The grandness of this residence must have impressed when it was first built; but now the poor have overrun it, and it’s littered with makeshift arrangements.  In our production the stairs descended down under the stage, with ropes replacing broken bannisters; while precarious thin steps ascended up into the flies until they disappeared from view.

The key to staging this brilliant play, I think, is to ensure that, no matter how broad the caricatures become, a dark current of reality keeps flowing underneath.  When Semyon puts a pistol to his temple, the audience needs to believe that he really may kill himself.  After all, just when it seems like the story has reached a joyful conclusion, news of an actual suicide arrives…