Director’s Note: She Loves Him, He Loves Her Not

Throughout the process of putting together She Loves Him, He Loves Her Not, there has been one question to which I keep returning: how do you find significance in so much irreverence? The themes of criminality, family and above all: love, which are explored in this play have a social relevance which will likely never fade. However, I think its greatest value is to be found in its engagement with magic and the motifs of fairy tale morality. In an age which tends towards the cynical,

“…this play is quite simply a reminder of the importance of fun, and the value of believing whole-heartedly in something.”

These ideas embody STAB’s values as a company. Created as a light-hearted, inclusive theatre company, returning STAB to its previous heights has become something of a personal project of mine. With a large increase in membership this year, led by an incredible group of freshers, there has never been a better time to take on a full-length play once again. Having never taken on a director’s role on this scale, the process has proved to be challenging, often stressful, but ultimately immensely rewarding, and I am looking forward to leading future productions. I am also indebted to my co-director Swara Fife for her invaluable insight in bringing these vibrant characters to the stage, and to Seleste Woo and Cassie Hotchkies for their creative and technical expertise.

It has been an absolute joy to work with such a diverse, motivated and above all, talented cast. Our rehearsal rooms have been filled with energy and ideas from start to finish, particularly when debating how to bring some of the script’s more farcical elements to life on stage. Perhaps unwittingly, we found ourselves trying to negotiate people jumping out of windows, throwing around cats, and even incorporating trampolines. Using my Director’s Note to give away how we negotiated these challenges, whilst also hampered by the budget constraints which seem to tie down even the greatest artistic visions, would only spoil the experience awaiting you when we take the stage. So, I will leave you to your anticipation, and two words which sit close to the heart of any Durham student: ‘that’s amore!’

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