KIM PHILBY by J.B. Miller

£6.00

A new take on the notorious British spy, in which three actors play Kim Philby, sometimes all at the same time.

A different, sometime funny, take on the notorious Cambridge spy who bamboozled an entire intelligence apparatus, including the CIA. Minimally staged, and set everywhere from London to Washington to Moscow to a bench in Regents Park.

Description

CHARACTERS

THIS PLAY IS WRITTEN TO BE PERFORMED BY 4 ACTORS – F1 M3

THE  3 MALE ACTORS (LATE 20s – 40s) EACH PLAY PHILBY, AS WELL AS THE FOLLOWING:

PHILBY

OLD PHILBY

YOUNGER PHILBY

ELLIOTT

ANGLETON

BURGESS

KRÔTENSHIELD

CIVIL SERVANT

APPARATCHIK

MENZIES

MILNE

MAKAYEV

INTELLIGENCE OFFICER 1

INTELLIGENCE OFFICER 2

COPELAND

WHITE

FOREIGN OFFICE SPOKESMAN

SPEAKER

NEWSPAPER SELLER

MALE JOURNALIST 1

MALE JOURNALIST 2

WAITER

 

THE FEMALE ACTOR (LATE 20s – 40s) PLAYS THE FOLLOWING;

RUFINA, EDITH, ELIZABETH, AILEEN, LADY JOURNALIST

 

AUTHOR NOTE – There’s no standard cast breakdown as the three men play all the male roles, and the one woman plays all the women’s roles.  At any one time, the second or third male actor plays whatever role the first can’t play simply by virtue of already being onstage playing something else.  I’ve written the play so that there should be enough time for the second or third actor to do a very quick costume change (i.e., slipping into a boater and striped jacket to play Burgess).  At one point, on page 12, Elizabeth is initially speaking to no one, as the actor playing Angleton needs enough time to do the speediest of costume changes to get into character.  At all times I’ve opted for speed over character accuracy, in the sense that it should be slightly dizzying for the audience to figure out how many actors there actually are, and who’s playing Philby.  The central conceit of the play is that Philby is many people, so that it should be slightly disorienting to follow who’s playing him, as the three actors are bound to look a little dissimilar.  (I wouldn’t be averse to having a mixed-race cast, as long as they were vaguely the same height, but generally speaking the actors should blur into each other, as stated on the character/set page at the beginning.) Technically speaking, though, a much larger number of actors could perform the play, as long as 3 different ones play Philby.

 

RUNNING TIME

Approximately 100 minutes

 

PREVIEW

Preview available here

Additional information

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