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Until I Get My Gorgeous Wings


A runaway girl returns to the sea after a dislocating period in London. She drags a washing machine down to the beach and loads it with the clothes she wore there, and the sheets she slept in. She sits to wait as the tide rises.

by Adrian Hornsby
premiere 3 Oct 2006, Union Theatre, London

A man mopes in the kitchen of his ground floor maisonette, wondering where his wife has gone. Looking round the white walls, he remembers her removing a fleck of paint from his eye. ‘Don’t move,’ she said. He hears her voice shifting and fragmenting as different snatches of his past blow by him. A twister of visions rises; in its eye, the mystery of her disappearance.

A woman waits in the back of a dark café for her son. He bursts onto the scene with a bewildering mix of cosmological paranoia, fantastical business schemes, and stories from the Great Wall of China. Yet for all his fabulous energy, an sense of always running suggests somewhere a missing thread …

Until I Get My Gorgeous Wings is a play about people waiting for a magical transformation, only to keep finding themselves again. The interwoven narratives hint at a larger landscape of connections and disappearances; lost pasts and déjà vus. It is written in a unique form of verbal counterpoint, with the actors’ lines stacked like the parts of a string quartet (see).

‘I go downstairs and get my things, though everything smells of London now — smells like everything else, like all the little houses all joined up to make a wall you can’t see past — is what that smell is. I watch them from the bus. With all those other people.’

  • 9 Jun 2007, The Space, London
  • 3–21 October 2006, Union Theatre, London (premier)
  • 26 May 2006, The Laundry, London (excerpt)
Emily 1: Emily Randall
Emily 2: Tessa Nicholson
Daniel: Matt Warman
Melissa 1: Melanie Gray
Melissa 2: Gemma Robinson
Melissa 3: Lydia Aers

directed by Tim Vincent-Smith
film elements by Adrian Hornsby
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