Joseph Potter, who starred in Philip Ridley‘s one-man The Poltergeist, will play Barry in the first major revival of Philip Ridley’s Leaves of Glass at Park Theatre.
Following its critically acclaimed premiere at Soho Theatre in 2007, master storyteller Philip Ridley’s four-hander is a gripping narrative of memory, manipulation, and power – now regarded as a modern classic – returns for the first time in 16 years with a new production by longtime collaborators, Lidless Theatre.
Philip Ridley is one of the country’s greatest living playwrights. His first play,’ The Pitchfork Disney’, changed the course of British drama. Joseph Potter is accompanied in the cast by Geraldine Alexander, Katie Buchholz and Ned Costello.
Leaves of Glass is at Park Theatre Thursday 11 May – Saturday 3 June.
You’re coming to Park Theatre, and then touring, with Leaves of Glass, what can you tell us about the play?
This is the first time the show has been seen since it premiered over 15 years ago at Soho Theatre, with a cast that included Ben Whishaw and Maxine Peake. It’s such a special play, wrought with all manner of things, but at the heart of it you have a family, struggling to escape their past and the things they tell themselves, and each other, in order to survive.
This isn’t your first time performing in a Philip Ridley play, what is it about the writing that really appeals to you?
Phil’s writing is so beautifully visceral and specific, his plays are gifts that just keep on giving. As an actor, I am always discovering and seeing things, and as a viewer I don’t think there are many writers that can capture what Philip can.
Director Max Harrison is no stranger to Ridley either, how have you found working together?
Max is an incredible director, his way of working has been so liberating. He places so much faith in you and allows you to be unbelievably free, nothing is set, it’s a playground.
And you won an OFFIE for your performance in Ridley’s The Poltergeist, how did that feel?
I was so grateful to win the OFFIE. It again just lets you know that people saw the work and it resonated with them… for all the hard work that myself, Phil and Wiebke Green put in, we were so thankful!
Of course, you were on your own for The Poltergeist, what are you looking forward to about having some fellow cast mates for this one?
Acting with other actors … it’s just so damn nice! I had an incredible time on The Poltergeist and I would ultimately see the audience as another character, and have the dialogue with them, but to be able to bounce off other actors. Yes, yes, yes. I can’t wait to play and mess around with them.
You’re playing Barry, tell us a little about the character and what you’re enjoying most about the role?
Barry is dynamite. He’s tenacious and tender – he’s been shackled and defined by his past and his family and he’s had enough. I’m enjoying his freedom, urgency and his heart… he’s a dreamer.
And what do you think you’ll find most challenging about the role?
A lot has happened to Barry, there is a weight of decisions implemented upon him that are so heavy. I need to work hard to understand it and bare the weight, but I will do it.
What would you say to anyone thinking of coming to see Leaves of Glass?
Stop thinking, just come. It embraces everything that a Ridley play is and subverts it as well – Leaves of Glass is darkly funny and poignant. See you there.