Me and Robert McKee ran at Circa
Theatre from 6 November to 4 December, 2010.
Greg McGee's new play Me and Robert McKee
sees him at the top of his game with a sharp, funny play about
the four 'M's - money, marriage, mate-ship and mortality.
Circa Theatre has scored a coup with the
world premier of McGee's new play. The sophisticated black comedy
revolves around the world of film.
According to Billy, a writer, "character is
destiny". He's facing the certain end of his marriage and the likely
end of his career. Reliant on teaching scriptwriting for a living
and the bottle for oblivion, his sense of self-worth is teetering on
the edge. When Mac, his best friend, a banker and would-be producer,
offers him a screenplay to write, the offer is not all it seems.
Will the gesture start "our hero's journey from darkness to
redemption" - and make them a million - or trigger the final act of
Billy's tragic career?
Along with gifting us an entertaining play,
McGee, through Billie, lets us in on some hard-earned secrets of
writing that he's learnt, both funny and cynical, hammered home
during a long career. As Greg says, "writing isn't difficult.
Everyone does it. Writing something worth a damn is extraordinarily
difficult. And making a decent living from writing something worth a
damn is harder again." Billie's take on writing and writers will be
of interest to every aspiring writer and creative artist.
While Greg's writing career hit the ground
running with one of this country's most successful plays,
Foreskin's Lament, he soon moved into film and television.
His television credits include Erebus: the Aftermath, Fallout,
Marlin Bay, Street Legal, and Doves of War. He has
co-written films such as Crooked Earth and Via
Like every writer, Greg has a variety of
responses to his own work. However he is particularly happy with
Me and Robert McKee.
"I really like this play on the page, the way
it combines humour and emotion and plays with the realities of the
real and the written. And I think it's very theatrical, without
being physical theatre, but the leap from the page to the stage is
the big test and, as always, it's both exciting and terrifying. I'm
very grateful to have director Conrad Newport at the helm and Chris
and Paul bringing it to life."
Me and Robert McKee is already an
international award-winner - co-winner of Best Stage Play at
Moondance Festival 2009 and runner-up in the 2010 Adam
of Paul, Christopher and Conrad
McGee biography - Oxford Companion of NZ Literature
Directed by Conrad Newport
Christopher Brougham and Paul McLaughlin
Set Design Brian King
Lighting Design Jennifer Lal
Stage Manager/Operator Miriam
Photography Howard Taylor, Stephen A'Court
Design Rose Millar, Tool Box
Producer Howard Taylor