[6] It transferred to the Young Vic Theatre in June 2015. Our Teacher Edition on Top Girls can help. The play was revived at The Nuffield Theatre (Southampton) in February 2014 with John and Lex Shrapnel to huge critical acclaim. Churchill’s answer comes in the form of a character who defines himself by his deeds and his loved ones, rather than the circumstances of his birth. After graduation, she began to write radio plays for the BBC including The Ants (1962), Not, Not, Not, Not Enough Oxygen (1971), and … [8], Steve Dinneen argued in City A.M. that the work "is remarkable in the way it so gracefully touches upon the great philosophical questions without ever feeling didactic. A tight two-hander taking place in a not-too-far off future, Churchill's play is a philosophical investigation into free will and the question of nature versus nurture. Continue Reading. 3 days ago, - Salter: A number any number is a shock.”, Twins are natural clones: they are two organisms that evolved from one fertilised egg and carry the identical genetic makeup as each other. It does not follow the traditional beginning, middle and end structure. Caryl Churchill’s play ‘A Number’ is about the ethics of human cloning – at least on the surface. That element of surprise is one among many reasons why she has had such a long and successful career – it takes a special kind of talent as a writer to keep audiences entertained and engrossed for over half a century. [11] Matt Wolf lauded A Number as a "beautiful play", and wrote that it "works not least as a thriller or bit of forensic detection, as Churchill plants clues prompting a reevaluation of the narrative at every turn. And does the original lose anything, its identity or value, by being copied? Bernard 2 discovers that he is actually a clone of his "brother" (Bernard 1), who was sent to a clinical home years before by his father (Salter) after the suicide of his mother, which left him in a constant state of fear and pain. That is why Mike Young Academy invited Lillian Wilde, a philosopher and visual artist, to analyse the play, and to interpret it in the form of a series of visuals based on photos of the actors. Churchill gives no stage directions and no indication of a setting for the play. Bernard 2: yes but it’s not me over there.”. Your email address will not be published. Caryl Churchill (born 3 September 1938, London) has become well known for her willingness to experiment with dramatic structure. SALTER finally admits that B2 is also a clone and that there was an original son. A great deal of issues and aspects can be learnt from the above play with diverse moral lessons, as well. [...] Are 'Who are you?' Salter tries to convince him not to go, or at least to come back soon, but Bernard 2 refuses, saying he needs to go. Downstairs, her first play, was written while she was still at university, and was first staged in 1958, winning an award at the Sunday Times National Union of Students Drama Festival. Introduction. In the 2002 production, the stage was described by one critic as a “bare blank design” with “no relation to domestic realism.” [3] The costumes of the play were as simple as the stage design. Caryl Churchill on IMDb: Awards, nominations, and wins. Is the copy worth less? [19] Starring Rhys Ifans and Tom Wilkinson, it was broadcast on BBC Two on 10 Sep 2008.[20]. the same question? Language is our only guide to find out what happened in the play but language also fails to deliver Caryl Churchill’s magnificent play only lasts an hour but contains more drama, and more ideas, than most writers manage in a dozen full-length works. He confronts his father and demands an explanation. The production was directed by Stephen Daldry and designed by Ian MacNeil and featured the following cast: Lighting was designed by Rick Fisher and Ian Dickinson was the sound designer. "[15], A Number was adapted by Caryl Churchill for television, in a co-production between the BBC and HBO Films. Imp., while the National revived possibly her most famous play, Top Girls. Bernard 1 grows increasingly agitated before threatening to murder Bernard 2. I wonder if the author had Freud’s idea of the Doppelgänger in mind when writing the script. All the illustrations for this article are by her. Special Events . A Number. But, granted we can put a figure on it, is the value of a person really impacted by the existence of a copy? Playwright Caryl Churchill was born on 3 September 1938 in London and grew up in the Lake District and in Montreal. http://mikeyoungacademy.dk/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/not-like-me-at-all-w.jpg, http://mikeyoungacademy.dk/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/MikeYoung_logo-1-300x154.png, A Number by Caryl Churchill – a philosophical analysis. Salter decides that they should sue the doctors, which soothes the shaken Bernard 2. A. Caryl Churchill (born 3 September 1938) is a British playwright known for dramatising the abuses of power, for her use of non- naturalistic techniques, and for … /. Salter: What? T / F . A Number is no cold thought experiment, but a quiet rumination on human nature". Accolades. In 1960, she received a BA in English from Oxford University where she wrote three plays: Downstairs, You’ve No Need to be Frightened, and Having a Wonderful Time. She doesn't have an immediately identifiable writing style or revert to certain kinds of characters or situations. Evening Standard [London] 27 Sept. 2002. https://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=, https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2014/feb/14/a-number-caryl-churchill-theatre-review-lyn-gardner, "My 3 Sons: Cloning's Unexpected Results", "Drunk Enough To Say I Love You?, Royal Court Theatre, London", "A Number, Young Vic, review: 'a virtuoso intensity, "A Number review: A sharp meditation on cloning and identity", "A Number, Bridge Theatre review - a dream team dazzles anew", "A Number is a brief and beautiful investigation into identity – review", "A Number at the Bridge Theatre review: Caryl Churchill's sci-fi drama asks what it means to be human", "Uma Thurman, Rhys Ifans and Tom Wilkinson star in two plays for BBC Two", New York Theater Workshop website for American production, Guardian review of Royal Court production, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=A_Number&oldid=992976366, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Bernard 1, Bernard 2, and Michael Black –, This page was last edited on 8 December 2020, at 03:27. Distributed over 100,000 study participants, this risk reduction would lead to one saved life, statistically speaking. In the next scene, angry Bernard 1 visits Salter for the first time since his childhood while Bernard 2 is away. That is a simple statement of fact. Her website is here. Is he an original or a copy? The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia. De Jongh, Nicholas. T / F. B2 has discovered that he has a twin brother. This direct . Required fields are marked *, - Evening Standard Award for Best Play ; License details Minimum Fee: $125 per performance; Details. The play leaves out the debate we typically associate with cloning. "[16][9] Arjun Neil Alim of The Independent stated that "Churchill, a political playwright par excellence, tactfully references current events. I have noticed you don’t monetize your blog, don’t waste your traffic, you can earn additional bucks every month. "A Number." Roger Allam on being a father and why Caryl Churchill is like Picasso A Number won the Evening Standard Theatre Award for best play when it debuted at the … Learn more about Churchill’s life and career, including her various awards. The play was written during a time of public debate over the ethics of cloning. Summary & Analysis Act One, Scene One; Act One, Scene Two; Act One, Scene Three; Act Two, Scene One; Act Two, Scene Two; Themes . It has long been proved that expression via acting is more direct than when the audience accesses literature in other means. Asked differently, is a twin less valuable than someone whose genetic material is unique? [1] Previewing from 14 February and running for only 4 weeks. [14], After seeing a 2020 Bridge Theatre performance, Nick Curtis of Evening Standard argued, "If the background logistics are sketchy – who made the human copies, and why? Often, we tend to think of them as one entity. One day he learns the shocking truth: he is just one of a number of clones. I will add to Vania’s point above, and use the opportunity to name drop Dostoyevsky’s ‘The Double’. The family decided to move to Montreal, Canada after the end of World War II. Some of Caryl Churchill's plays, much as I find them intellectually engaging, don't appeal to my inner director, but some of her recent short plays, such as Far Away and A Number, are so spare and enigmatic that reading and (inevitably) rereading them provokes the imaginative concentration required when directing, and does so more than most other scripts I know. and 'What are you made from?' Salter: because if that’s me over there who am I? Hoctor grounds his argument on a phenomenological theory of the ‘minimal self’: according to Dan Zahavi, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Copenhagen, the self in its most minimal sense – leaving out life story, social connections, personal traits etc. 27 Feb. 2009 <. The play debuted at the Royal Court Theatre in London on 23 September 2002. How identical are identical clones (or twins, for that matter) really? At that time, Caryl was only 10 years old. Bernard 2: A twin would be a surprise but a number The critic disputed comparisons of the broken dialogue to that of David Mamet and said that "the language here is not nearly as compelling on the stage". The Top Girls, Far Away and Vinegar Tom author, Caryl Churchill turns 80 this year, top directors and playwrights take an in-depth look at how her work has changed the theatre landscapen In the play, the concern is raised about originality . A Number is at the Library Theatre in Manchester between Thursday 23 April - Saturday 9 May. Lillian Wilde is a graduate in the field of phenomenology. Here a government official slowly goes mad as he keeps on meeting his exact duplicate. SALTER claims that scientists have illegally made copies of B2. A tight two-hander taking place in a not-too-far off future, Churchill's play is a philosophical investigation into free will and the question of nature versus nurture. A Number by Caryl Churchill - a philosophical analysis Caryl Churchill's A Number is a play that explores the issue of human cloning through the relationships between a father and his three sons. A tight two-hander taking place in a not-too-far off future, Churchill's play is a philosophical investigation into free will and the question of nature versus nurture. [9], In a 2006 review of a later Churchill work, The Independent's Paul Taylor described the play as one of the best dramas of the new millennium, and as "superbly compressed and economic". His double is a cooler version of himself. Scene 1 . Many critics over the years have lauded A Number, arguing Churchill created a work of significant intellectual depth with effective economy of style. Directed by Max Stafford-Clark. In this guest blog post, she asks some existential questions about a soon-to-be-staged play on human cloning. Some time later, Bernard 1 returns and tells Salter that he followed and killed Bernard 2 after he left the country. Winner! 4 days ago, CROSSDEM 2021 - Cross Disciplinary Approaches to Prehistoric Demography - conference 17 March by, 'European digital sovereignty - Strategic autonomy in the realm of new tech' - 17 December by, Social media for researchers (live seminar or webinar), English-language proofreading of PhD dissertations, theses and articles, Salter: Even one, a twin, would be a shock, Bernard 2: A twin would be a surprise but a number. Bernard 2 decides to leave the country for a while, both to get away from Salter and because he fears that Bernard 1 might try to kill him. The cloning of Dolly the sheep, the creation of human embryos at Advanced Cell Technology, and the cloning of a kitten[2] gave rise to controversy concerning possible human cloning. This week on 'Bee' Reviewed is one of the more unique plays that I've come across, A Number by Caryl Churchill published in 2002. Salter then admits that the clones were meant to give him another chance at raising Bernard, without any of his many parental mistakes. This leads me to my last inquiry. "[18] Pahl wrote that questions asked by the play are, "If we had a do-over, could we atone for our mistakes? The story, set in the near future, is structured around the conflict between a father (Salter) and his sons (Bernard 1, Bernard 2, and Michael Black) – two of whom are clones of the first one. Facts about Caryl Churchill 5: emigration. He has learned about the clones, and is furious at his father for doing it. (1991) Her play, "Top Girls", was performed at the Royal Court Theatre in London, England with Lesley Manville, Deborah Findlay, Lesley Sharp in the cast. Get an estimate Get the Script. And now, just a week after the Donmar Warehouse revived her 2000 play Far Away, the Bridge Theatre now revives the play that came immediately afterwards, A Number, in 2002. aryl Churchill was the most important female playwright of the 20th century. Why was he created? Salter then decides to meet the other clones of his son, starting with the one named Michael Black. At 81, Caryl Churchill is still going strong: last year, the Royal Court premiered a quartet of her latest short plays, Glass.Kill. A Christmas Carol 3 December - 16 January 2021. Her mother was a fashion model, Jan. Caryl Churchill. Bernard 1 then leaves and kills himself, leaving Salter alone. “Bernard 2: what if someone else is the one, the first one, the real one…”. Salter always wore a rumpled looking suit, sometimes expensive looking, but sometimes not. Caryl Churchill, British playwright whose work frequently dealt with feminist issues, the abuses of power, and sexual politics. The play was revived at the Sheffield Crucible studio in October 2006 starring real-life father and son Timothy West and Samuel West. A number. That Theatre, an English-language theatre group in Copenhagen, is staging the play ‘A Number’ by Caryl Churchill in February and March 2018. [8] James M. Brandon had mixed sentiments in Theatre Journal, arguing that while it "is a wellwritten play—evocative, disturbing, and with more than one surprise—it remains a troubled one that seems, in production, unfinished. " [13] In the Chicago Tribune, Chris Jones described A Number as "masterfully written". "A Number," to be exact (or inexact), is the name of Caryl Churchill's stunning new play, which opened last night at the New York Theater Workshop. Plot Summary. Buy Tickets Menu Close Flight 10 December - 16 January 2021. (1987) Her play, "Serious Money", was performed at the Wyndham's Theatre in London, England with Tom Chadbon, Patti Love, Cyril Nri, Gary Olsen in the cast. Struggling with distance learning? Bluebeard. Salter explains that he agreed to a cloning experiment to try again at parenting another version of his son, but, unbeknownst to Salter, the doctors had unethically made several more clones. [18] Arifa Akbar of The Guardian said that "Churchill’s linguistic tics – of interruptions and half-finished sentences – create a hyperreal effect and enable Salter’s obfuscation". Caryl Churchill addresses these issues entertainingly, and with increasing urgency in ‘A Number’. 5. "[17] Andrzej Lukowski of Time Out called the play a "masterpiece". Summary. Her notable plays included Cloud 9, Top Girls, Serious Money, and A Number. In 2004, the play made its American debut at the New York Theatre Workshop in a production starring Sam Shepard (later played by Arliss Howard) and Dallas Roberts. PhD candidate at the University of Kent and specialised twin researcher James W. Hoctor, disagrees with the widespread notion that twins form a singular entity or that they possess a ‘we-self’. A Number by Caryl Churchill. The fact that I experience from my very own point-of-view that is different to everyone else’s is enough to account for the fact that I am me; whether I have a twin with the same genetic material as me or not. [12] Don Aucoin of The Boston Globe praised the way the playwright "devotes no time to preamble or writerly throat-clearing, but plunges us straightaway into the play’s central dilemma". Zinnie Harris will direct the play at the Royal Lyceum Theatre in Edinburgh in April 2017.[7]. The play, which explores the consequences of human cloning, will be preceded by a debate organised by Mike Young Academy. In Caryl Churchill 's deceptively simple but oh-so-slippery play a father, Salter, is confronted by three sons out of what could be at least 20. This production later played at the Chocolate Factory in 2010 and at the Fugard Theatre, Cape Town in 2011. Many critics over the years have lauded A Number, arguing Churchill created a work of significant intellectual depth with effective economy of style. A Number is a full-length drama by Caryl Churchill. This beguiling thriller delves into the ethical issue of human cloning while exploring second chances. Need a panel moderator? 2m. A Number (Play) Plot & Characters | StageAgent A Number – review. What is the source of our individuality? [...] It’s almost exactly an hour long and the ending is abrupt, but Churchill packs more ideas and feeling into that time than most dramatists manage at twice the length. Interesting article Lillian, and I am really looking forward to seeing the play in February! Churchill, Caryl. a number, caryl churchill, Cloud Nine, playwright, season 18-19, ... she explained, “I was fed up with the situation I found myself in in the 1960’s. Is it money? Caryl Churchill was born in London on September 3rd, 1938. Caryl Churchill wrote A Number in 2002, when debates around human cloning were at fever pitch. Lillian Wilde (right) is a philosopher and visual artist. Besides the phenomenological point of view, your analysis made me immediately think of the psychoanalytical discussion on otherness and the concept of “the double”. Hi Account Login Basket: 0 | £ 0.00. Page 5/10. Why, then, would a twin be a shock? How do we measure how much a person is worth? Ben Brantley of The New York Times described A Number as "stunning" and "a gripping dramatic consideration of what happens to autonomous identity in a world where people can be cloned". Salter: Even one, a twin, would be a shock [14] Richard Pahl of Northwest Herald billed A Number as an "engaging meditation on human cloning, personal identity and the conflicting claims of nature and nurture". "[15], Dinneen argued that the play is about "our desire to be unique, for our lives to have meaning, for our imperfect minds and bodies to somehow achieve perfect ends. She was educated at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, where she read English. Her innovations in this regard are sometimes so startling and compelling that reviewers tend to focus on the novelty of her works to the exclusion of her ideas. See Mike Young Academy’s conference and events page here. Jump to Section: Details; Media; Materials; Authors; Community; Cast Size. Indeed, one does not need a genetically identical copy to be confronted with oneself. Her father was a political cartoonist named Robert Churchill. The fact that I experience from my very own point-of-view that is different to everyone else’s is enough to account for the fact that I am me; whether I have a twin with the same genetic material as me or not. What role does upbringing, culture, and circumstances play? – the relationships between Salter and his offspring, and their differing reactions to finding that they are not unique, are right on the money. T / F. At the hospital B2 met some of the clones. Salter, stricken with grief, demands to know the details, but Bernard 1 refuses to say anything. Pahl wrote that the work "offers intellectual and emotional depth, and illustrates the ways people rationalize bad behavior and unthinkingly objectify others, including their own flesh and blood. [10] After watching a performance featuring John and Lex Shrapnel, Lyn Gardner of The Guardian dubbed the play "[p]unchy, compact and endlessly inquisitive," arguing that it "is no simple warning against the perils of science messing with nature, but a complex and humane study of parental guilt, regret and responsibility and what it really means to be a father or son. "[15] Clive Davis of The Times, however, panned the play as "both too short and too long" after seeing the same performance. What is the value of a human life? A Number is a 2002 play by the English playwright Caryl Churchill which addresses the subject of human cloning and identity, especially nature versus nurture. It seems something that could lead to a very interesting discussion. Anyway, great work. The play was produced around the time of the Dolly sheep cloning experiment and clearly is impacted by the ethical, moral, legal, … Thank you Vania for your interesting point. The worry seems to be twofold: Is a copy less ‘real’ than an original? General Comprehension. Caryl Churchill's Pigs and Dogs premiered at the Royal Court Theatre, London, in 2016, in a production directed by Dominic Cooke. First and foremost, she discusses the question of personal identity: A series of questions unfolds in the play from here. Request license. Michael, who never knew Salter, is a happily married maths teacher with three children. A Number is an original work published in 2002 in association with the Royal Court Theatre of London. I didn’t like being a barrister’s wife and going out to dinner with other professional people and dealing with middle-class life. Caryl Churchill’s play ‘A Number’ is about the ethics of human cloning – at least on the surface. And then there is another question: Can we measure the value of a human being at all? Is the genetic material the main determining factor of someone’s identity? T / F . Later, after Bernard 1 has left, Bernard 2 returns, having met Bernard 1 in the park. Salter demands to know more about him, particularly about something personal and unique, but Michael cannot answer, and Salter is unsatisfied with what Michael can give him. ‘A Number’ premiered at That Theatre Company in Copenhagen on the 21st February 2018, following a panel debate with Joshua M. Brickman, Professor of Stem Cell and Developmental Biology, Mickey Gjerris, Associate Professor in Bioethics, and Pia Søltoft, Vicar of the Marble Church (Marmorkirken) with Mike Young as moderator. A Number. The play was revived again at the Bridge Theatre, in February 2020, with Roger Allam and Colin Morgan, directed by Polly Findlay. Should sue the doctors, which soothes the shaken Bernard 2 after he left the country that followed! Since his childhood while Bernard 2 one named Michael Black on September 3rd, 1938, Caryl Churchill s. Often, we tend to think of them as one entity sue the,! 1 visits salter for what he has learned about the ethics of human cloning – at least on surface! Clones were meant to give him another chance at raising Bernard, without any of his son, with! Play on human cloning while exploring second chances how much a person is worth Materials. Above research takes into account a Number was adapted by Caryl Churchill returns, met... 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