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. Salter: Even one, a twin, would be a shock Caryl Churchill's Pigs and Dogs premiered at the Royal Court Theatre, London, in 2016, in a production directed by Dominic Cooke. It asks important questions. The play debuted at the Royal Court Theatre in London on 23 September 2002. 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. He has learned about the clones, and is furious at his father for doing it. Is he an original or a copy? The play, which explores the consequences of human cloning, will be preceded by a debate organised by Mike Young Academy. Born in London on September 3, 1938, Caryl Churchill grew up in England and Canada. He argues instead that twinship is “a joint enterprise which includes a sense of self and other.”. She was educated at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, where she read English. 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. Bernard 2: A twin would be a surprise but a number Thank you Vania for your interesting point. Lillian Wilde is a graduate in the field of phenomenology. Interesting article Lillian, and I am really looking forward to seeing the play in February! Dineen wrote that Salter's interludes "say as much as an hour’s worth of dialogue". One day he learns the shocking truth: he is just one of a number of clones. Language is our only guide to find out what happened in the play but language also fails to deliver 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. In February/March 2009, the play made its Los Angeles/Orange County debut at the Rude Guerrilla Theater Company in a production directed by Scott Barber, starring Vince Campbell and Mark Coyan. He is completely undisturbed that he is a clone, and tells Salter that he does not care. But, granted we can put a figure on it, is the value of a person really impacted by the existence of a copy? But are twins actually identical? [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". Here We Go (Short Play, Drama) This play confronts the topic of aging and death in 3 separate parts. "[16][9] Arjun Neil Alim of The Independent stated that "Churchill, a political playwright par excellence, tactfully references current events. Here a government official slowly goes mad as he keeps on meeting his exact duplicate. Indeed, one does not need a genetically identical copy to be confronted with oneself. Salter then admits that the clones were meant to give him another chance at raising Bernard, without any of his many parental mistakes. "[18] Pahl wrote that questions asked by the play are, "If we had a do-over, could we atone for our mistakes? Continue Reading. Bluebeard. 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. 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. Salter always wore a rumpled looking suit, sometimes expensive looking, but sometimes not. "[17] Andrzej Lukowski of Time Out called the play a "masterpiece". Her notable plays included Cloud 9, Top Girls, Serious Money, and A Number. Required fields are marked *, - Bernard thought he was an only child. 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. Buy Tickets Menu Close Flight 10 December - 16 January 2021. Salter decides that they should sue the doctors, which soothes the shaken Bernard 2. SALTER finally admits that B2 is also a clone and that there was an original son. The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia. See Mike Young Academy’s conference and events page here. Salter: What? Instead, Churchill takes human cloning as a framework for philosophical considerations. Imp., while the National revived possibly her most famous play, Top Girls. Planning a conference or event? Caryl Churchill is not a playwright who repeats herself. Learn more about Churchill’s life and career, including her various awards. 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. Our Teacher Edition on Top Girls can help. 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 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". [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". At that time, Caryl was only 10 years old. 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 (born 3 September 1938) is a British playwright known for dramatising the abuses of power, for her use of non- naturalistic techniques, and for … With Cloning, Kitty - New York Times." I will add to Vania’s point above, and use the opportunity to name drop Dostoyevsky’s ‘The Double’. [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. " Many critics over the years have lauded A Number, arguing Churchill created a work of significant intellectual depth with effective economy of style. Salter then decides to meet the other clones of his son, starting with the one named Michael Black. 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. Bernard 1 grows increasingly agitated before threatening to murder Bernard 2. Michael, who never knew Salter, is a happily married maths teacher with three children. 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. This production later played at the Chocolate Factory in 2010 and at the Fugard Theatre, Cape Town in 2011. 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? Say that everyone was willing to pay $100, it follows that “the total dollar amount that the group would be willing to pay to save one statistical life … would be $100 per person × 100,000 people, or $10 million.” Easy, right? Why, then, would a twin be a shock? "[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. A Number. I say ‘on the surface’ because to me as a philosopher, the questions she asks strike me as working at a deeper existential level. Plot Summary. 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. The play was revived at the Sheffield Crucible studio in October 2006 starring real-life father and son Timothy West and Samuel West. Together, he and his father confront epic questions of identity, intimacy and belonging. A great deal of issues and aspects can be learnt from the above play with diverse moral lessons, as well. 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. 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. Caryl Churchill (born 3 September 1938, London) has become well known for her willingness to experiment with dramatic structure. Later, after Bernard 1 has left, Bernard 2 returns, having met Bernard 1 in the park. The play A Number by Caryl Churchill shows the features of postmodern plays. Facts about Caryl Churchill 5: emigration. Bernard 1 then leaves and kills himself, leaving Salter alone. Here is how a Twitter campaign is putting global health on the agenda, 143,000 people have seen Maria’s biological experiments, Mike Young Academy uses cookies to improve your site experience, the debate we typically associate with cloning, twinship is “a joint enterprise which includes a sense of self and other.”, Apps to make Twitter more effective for scientists, The real time Twitter window: What you miss if you only pre-schedule tweets, Scientists in Denmark – the top 100 on social media, Copenhagen scientists – the top 100 on social media in 2020, Webinar: Boost your research career with Twitter and LinkedIn – course at University of Copenhagen. [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. Previewing from 14 February and running for only 4 weeks. T / F. B2 has discovered that he has a twin brother. 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. "[15] Clive Davis of The Times, however, panned the play as "both too short and too long" after seeing the same performance. Often, we tend to think of them as one entity. A Number is no cold thought experiment, but a quiet rumination on human nature". Jump to Section: Details; Media; Materials; Authors; Community; Cast Size. Scene 1 . What role does upbringing, culture, and circumstances play? [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? The worry seems to be twofold: Is a copy less ‘real’ than an original? That is a simple statement of fact. Churchill, Caryl. [13] In the Chicago Tribune, Chris Jones described A Number as "masterfully written". 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. 5. I wonder if the author had Freud’s idea of the Doppelgänger in mind when writing the script. New York: Theatre Communications Group, 2003. (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. 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. There are two problems with this in applying it to a human (or any other conscious being): the concept of the minimal self tells us that there is, in fact, a unique self to every conscious being. If we turn to the art world we see: even the most precise, magnificent forgery of an artwork remains a ‘fake’ and is worth nothing compared to the master’s original, which does not lose either its value or its identity. How identical are identical clones (or twins, for that matter) really? 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. Caryl Churchill. De Jongh, Nicholas. Special Events . After graduation, she began to write radio plays for the BBC including The Ants (1962), Not, Not, Not, Not Enough Oxygen (1971), and … The play was written during a time of public debate over the ethics of cloning. aryl Churchill was the most important female playwright of the 20th century. 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. Salter, stricken with grief, demands to know the details, but Bernard 1 refuses to say anything. "[15], A Number was adapted by Caryl Churchill for television, in a co-production between the BBC and HBO Films. Bernard 2: yes but it’s not me over there.”. 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’. You can use the best adsense alternative for any type of website (they approve all websites), for more info simply search in gooogle: boorfe’s tips monetize your website, Your email address will not be published. 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. She doesn't have an immediately identifiable writing style or revert to certain kinds of characters or situations. Distributed over 100,000 study participants, this risk reduction would lead to one saved life, statistically speaking. I say ‘on the surface’ because to me as a philosopher, the questions she asks strike me as working at a deeper existential level. Summary. The above research takes into account A Number by Caryl Churchill. Is it something you can put a figure on?”. It seemed claustrophobic. Many critics over the years have lauded A Number, arguing Churchill created a work of significant intellectual depth with effective economy of style. The family decided to move to Montreal, Canada after the end of World War II. "A Number." A Number is at the Library Theatre in Manchester between Thursday 23 April - Saturday 9 May. Caryl Churchill wrote A Number in 2002, when debates around human cloning were at fever pitch. 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. You can never be quite sure what to expect walking into a Caryl Churchill play. This direct . A Number is a full-length drama by Caryl Churchill. the same question? Some time later, Bernard 1 returns and tells Salter that he followed and killed Bernard 2 after he left the country. Directed by Max Stafford-Clark. [19] Starring Rhys Ifans and Tom Wilkinson, it was broadcast on BBC Two on 10 Sep 2008.[20]. Lillian Wilde (right) is a philosopher and visual artist. 3 days ago, - Page 5/10. Zinnie Harris will direct the play at the Royal Lyceum Theatre in Edinburgh in April 2017.[7]. Is the genetic material the main determining factor of someone’s identity? (PDF) Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? [...] 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. ‘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. "[11] Conversely, Jane Shillings of The Telegraph argued, "The highly wrought writing veers at times towards the mannered, leaving a faint sense that the style of Churchill’s play exceeds its substance, and the issue of cloning has lost its urgency". Caryl Churchill’s play ‘A Number’ is about the ethics of human cloning – at least on the surface. The play leaves out the debate we typically associate with cloning. In this guest blog post, she asks some existential questions about a soon-to-be-staged play on human cloning. This short, startling play looks at what lies behind it. A Number (Play) Plot & Characters | StageAgent A Number – review. That Theatre, an English-language theatre group in Copenhagen, is staging the play ‘A Number’ by Caryl Churchill in February and March 2018. Playwright Caryl Churchill was born on 3 September 1938 in London and grew up in the Lake District and in Montreal. Caryl Churchill addresses these issues entertainingly, and with increasing urgency in ‘A Number’. This beguiling thriller delves into the ethical issue of human cloning while exploring second chances. – the relationships between Salter and his offspring, and their differing reactions to finding that they are not unique, are right on the money. However, Brandon praised the final scene as "brilliant" and said that one of its characters "serves as a welcome reminder that it is possible to have an ostensibly normal life", ultimately describing A Number as "one of the more intellectually vital scripts to emerge in the new century" despite shortcomings. Besides the phenomenological point of view, your analysis made me immediately think of the psychoanalytical discussion on otherness and the concept of “the double”. Her mother was a fashion model, Jan. Caryl Churchill. Economists have come up with one answer: the ‘value of statistical life’ estimates first how much people are willing to pay to reduce their individual risk of dying by 1 in 100,000. General Comprehension. “Bernard 2: what if someone else is the one, the first one, the real one…”. “Bernard 2: someone like you couldn’t have tried harder… If you’d tried harder you’d have been different from what you were like and you weren’t.”. 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. [1] It does not follow the traditional beginning, middle and end structure. The play was revived again at the Bridge Theatre, in February 2020, with Roger Allam and Colin Morgan, directed by Polly Findlay. [...] Are 'Who are you?' 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. First and foremost, she discusses the question of personal identity: A series of questions unfolds in the play from here. The various Bernards usually wore jeans and a T-shirt, but sometimes a sweatshirt.[4]. Caryl Churchill, British playwright whose work frequently dealt with feminist issues, the abuses of power, and sexual politics. The play was revived at The Nuffield Theatre (Southampton) in February 2014 with John and Lex Shrapnel to huge critical acclaim. It has long been proved that expression via acting is more direct than when the audience accesses literature in other means. 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. Upgrade to A + Download this LitChart! I have noticed you don’t monetize your blog, don’t waste your traffic, you can earn additional bucks every month. The play was produced around the time of the Dolly sheep cloning experiment and clearly is impacted by the ethical, moral, legal, … 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. Introduction. [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. Nominations, and tells salter that he has learned about the ethics of.. Award for Best play. [ 20 ] Vic Theatre in Edinburgh in April 2017. [ 5.. New York Times. the Royal Court Theatre in June 2015 Materials ; Authors ; Community ; Cast.... 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