A Second, Surprise Trip to Temple Studios.


After a few Tumblr exchanges I somehow found myself headed into London to see Frances Koncan. Obviously that somehow meant we were bound to end up seeing The Drowned Man. Being only my second time I was in awe of Frances’ wealth of knowledge about the show. She is a walking dictionary filled with happiness and joy; I loved every second of it! Any who, what follows is my recap of my sudden surprise second journey to Temple Studios and The Drowned Man. Watch out for spoilers!

Okay so having downed a drink at a nearby pub, and having gotten on the queue early, I was sufficiently excited to see the show. The elevator took me right to the basement where I was immediately faced with Conor Doyle.

Yes you saw that correct, THE Conor Doyle as Frankie. Now let me say I almost shit myself right then for 2 reasons. Reason 1: he was not at all posted on the cast board for the evening. In fact Carl was supposed to be playing the role. But alas it was Conor Doyle in the flesh and blood. Reason 2: IT WAS CONOR DOYLE, DO I REALLY NEED A SECOND REASON?!?!

Once I got over his sheer presence I decided to follow the shit out of him.  I wanted to see his take on Frankie and I wanted to follow the role more than the 5 minutes I did my first trip. Unbeknownst to myself I would be the only person to follow him for his first loop.

There is nothing more magical then following someone by yourself, and knowing that they are performing for you and only you.  He delivered each scene with 100% intensity and then some. I was the only person to watch him in the movie theatre. The only person as he went mad. It was he and I going through it together. The most connected I had ever been at a Punchdrunk production. Something I will hold with me for a long time.

After I finished off the perfect first loop with him, I decided to make my way up to the dessert to see what trouble I could get myself into. Then I wandered around aimlessly for a while. I explored rooms. I ignored scenes id seen. After crawling through a tunnel under the sand, I made my way into the witches hut (is it a hut or a house I have no idea). After snooping around I almost shit my pants a second time. This was because somehow the Dust Witch snuck past me and had managed to tuck herself into bed. I followed her through most of her motions and watched as she prepared various enchanted objects for people. She cleaned up after Badlands Jack then she bathed him and save him from death or insanity. From there I continued to follow her until she took me in for her 1:1. This was one of the most frightening 1:1’s I have ever seen in my entire life. That was a lie, I did not see anything. I was blindfolded and lead on a chase. I was trying to find the sandman but all I found was fire. So much fire and heat. She set me free and we parted ways.

From there I headed back down to the studios where I would come across the doctor. I followed him as he examined both William and Mary as the spiraled towards delirium. I stayed with him even though I realized how evil he actually was. He was perpetuating the madness amongst the actors and actresses within the studio. Eventually he pulled me in for a consultation where I looked at ink blots and read sight lines. The sight lines told the story of the sandman. Then the doctor realized I was just like a patient who died while drowning. He then threw me out.

From there I stumbled down to the entrance to the studios where I met up with the guard. I followed him as he closed down his station. Eventually he guided me towards the finale ultimatum. We embraced as the murders unfolded before us.

The show ended and I went to the bar where I found Frances talking to Glenn (aka Delirium Dog). It was a pleasure to meet him, however short, and I hope I will come across his path sometime in the New York hotel hallways of The McKittrick.

Overall I had an amazing second go at the show. It was nice to see Felix Barrett and Fernanda Prata milling about still taking notes and critiquing performances. It’s nice to know that even though it had a looming end point, the creative team is invested in improving the show wherever possible. Until next time.


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