Developed by The Blockheads and written by Conor O'Loughlin, God Forsaken is inspired by the Greek myth of Persephone retold as a modern exploration of trauma, recovery and relapse. Reflected through the lens of the personal "underworlds" we all navigate, this will be an ensemble piece comprised of two acts. Both acts will feel very distinct -- where Act One is expansive, world-building and "lived-in", Act Two is claustrophobic and symbolic. Most notably, God Forsaken will be The Blockheads' first international venture, with development phases in Glasgow, Scotland and New York City.
The premise centers on Sophie Owens, a 20-something New Yorker, upon her return to NYC after completing a lengthy oversees tour with the United States Navy. As Sophie tries to reconnect with her old friends and family, she finds herself standing at a distance from the life she once knew. Act One will see Sophie struggling with PTSD from her military service, experiencing flashbacks represented by a reimagined Greek Chorus. Act Two plunges Sophie back into her military roots, taking place on a Trident submarine housed in Scotland during a global military event. This will include additional characters portrayed by Scottish cast members, reflective of the play’s transatlantic origins.
Ultimately, God Forsaken will be – despite its mythic origins – a timely play whose message is never so simplistic as "war is hell" nor so contentious as to suggest there are easy answers to the questions it raises. It will tell the story of one woman's escape from a hell of her own making, supported by forces earthly and almighty, in pursuit of her authentic self.
The project is currently in the early development stage, with workshops and script development sessions taking place in Glasgow and New York between September and October 2018. An early sharing of the work is planned to take place in early 2019. Our goal is to pilot a transatlantic creative model for small companies, the ultimate goal being to widen collaboration opportunities to inform the work we make and encourage internationalism in an increasingly insular world.