July 12th - Aug 5th 2017, Theatre N16
77 Bedford Hill, SW12 9HD

The God of Hell

After a year making a documentary and volunteering on the front-line of the European refugee crisis, critically acclaimed fringe theatre company Craft Theatre returns to London this summer with Sam Shepard's The God of Hell, the first piece in a 12-month season of four shows.

The setting is a Wisconsin dairy farm, where the heifer-breeding Frank and Emma live in rustic isolation. But their peace has been shattered by Graig Haynes, a radioactive refugee from a plutonium-producing establishment. While he hides in the basement, a supposed salesman of patriotic baubles named Welch turns up in hot pursuit. What follows is a process of intimidation in which Welch not only gets his man, but terrorises the innocent mid-Westerners.

Director Rocky Rodriguez, Jr. says: "Shepard says the piece is "a take-off on Republican fascism". It is eerie, it is satire, and it is goofy at times. It premiered in 2005, in response to the human rights abuses/justified experimentation revealed from declassified 'plutonium files' in which the US government injected/fed/and induced plutonium on unsuspecting citizens including the disabled, the pregnant, and the testicles of convicts, all for the creation of  fancy nuclear developments. The piece was viewed as a touch too far-fetched, but people didn't really know about these experiments at the time. With the rise of fake news, profit-seeking immigration detention centres, ICE, the far right in the USA/Europe and Trump-ism, climate denialism, undeclared war, prioritising the corporation over the citizen, society is heading towards the same place that they used to justify the plutonium experiments. All of a sudden Shepard's satire demands real reflection." Craft Theatre actors have previous experience including the RSC, ENO, Royal Court, and many major motion pictures.

Craft Theatre are producing a full season of 4 shows over the next 12 months across multiple London fringe venues, including The God of Hell.

Other pieces will include: The Nazi Comparison - devised with excerpts from Hanns Johst's Schlageter (one of the few "Nazi" plays) juxtaposed with contemporary political rhetoric; and His Name Was Samir Nasrallah - devised from the story of Rachel Corrie, and Craft Theatre's first-hand experience on the front line of the European Refugee Crisis.

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