In the stage adaptation of A Monster Calls, Keith Gilmore is playing the role of The Monster, with the show currently open at Rose Theatre in Kingston, before heading to Bristol Old Vic and The Kennedy Center in Washington. The adaptation by Sally Cookson and Adam Peck is based on the novel by Patrick Ness, and the current run is directed by Sally Cookson. We found out from Keith about being cast in A Monster Calls, playing his role of The Monster and what he’s looking forward to for continuing in the production.
How much did you know about A Monster Calls before booking your role and was there anything that drew you to the script?
I had read the book by Patrick Ness and loved the story and the meaning behind it. I knew instantly it was something I wanted to get involved with.
What is The Monster like to play and how was it getting into character for the first time?
In this play, The Monster is in the form of a yew tree. This was challenging to find the physicality and imagination to bring it to life but at the same time has been so much fun. I’ve always loved physical theatre and I’m still finding new ways to portray the character even now.
What is it like being part of the cast and how was it preparing for the show?
It’s great being a part of an amazing company and each member of the cast and crew are equally as important as we all come together to tell the story.
Why would you recommend booking tickets to see A Monster Calls and who do you think it will appeal to?
The story carries a very important message and I would encourage everyone to come and see it. It’s amazing to see the different reactions from people of all ages and backgrounds.
The show opens at Rose Theatre in Kingston, what’s it like performing there and how was opening night?
In the Rose, the audience are very close to the stage and this creates an intimate setting for the story which works really well.
Is there anything you’re most looking forward to for continuing in your role at Kingston, Bristol Old Vic and The Kennedy Center, Washington?
I absolutely love Bristol and I’ve performed at the Old Vic a few times and can’t wait to be back there.