The story of Margaret Wilson, the Scottish covenanter executed by tidal drowning in 1685 for refusing to swear allegiance to the English crown will be shared in a new reading at the BFI Southbank. The 30-minute monologue, entitled Where There Is No More Sea, will transport the audience to Wilson's imagined last thoughts and words as she awaited her death on the shores of Solway Frith in Scotland.
This will be the latest instalment of visionary playwright David Rudkin's epic PlacePrintscycle, presented by New Perspectives Theatre Company. PlacePrints are a series of ten new dramatic works set in specific places across the UK. Each of the new works gives voice to an unseen presence that continues to haunt a location. Wilson's story - with clear contemporary resonance for Scottish independence today - stands as a testament to integrity, as Wilson refused all offers of pardon in exchange for repenting her views:
"If I lie to live, you take from me my life indeed."
Nottingham based New Perspectives will present the event in collaboration with David Rudkin. To date they have presented live readings of the PlacePrintsacross the country with actors including Michael Pennington, Charlotte Cornwell, Juliet Stevenson, Frances Tomelty and Toby Jones.
Artistic Director of New Perspectives, Jack McNamara, says:
David Rudkin is one of our great visionaries, and nowhere will this be more evident than in these two stunning works, old and new. Where There is No More Sea is a brilliant and hallucinatory new work and Penda's Fen is largely considered the most important experimental film in the history of British television. Together they will offer audiences an evening of incredible richness from a mind unlike any other in our culture.
This world premiere reading will be performed by acclaimed Scottish actor Frances Grey. The reading will take place at the British Film Institute on London's Southbank on Saturday 10th June, followed immediately by a rare screening of Rudkin's cult classic television film, Penda's Fen directed by Alan Clarke.
Access to Where There Is No More Sea is provided with tickets to the screening Penda's Fen. You can find booking details and further information here.