SHOW STATUS: Ready to Tour
CATEGORY: More Than Words
Email Address: email@example.com
Company Website: http://www.facebook.com/Beyond-The-Yard-168045793678178/
Producer Name: Terence Smith
Synopsis ( max 1500): 52 Hertz
This is a story about you, me and the loneliest whale in the world. Five people with five stories unravel the contemporary nature of isolation; alone in an apartment, in a bustling bar, in the dial tone of a message bank and across the deep blue – waiting for a reply. 52 Hertz uses performance and movement to reach out and touch the empathetic soul of human existence and is inspired by the true story of 52 Blue – the loneliest whale in the world. This whale, first discovered in the late 80s calls out at the abnormal frequency of 52Hz and to this date continues to be tracked on its solo journey across the ocean.
52 Hertz follows the story of five people all connected through the common link to the central character of Maddie and a shared admiration for the story of the 52 Hertz whale. Each of these characters is primarily situated in a different location; Maddie – her lounge, Tim – out at sea, Asha – a bar/her room, Damon – his office and Tamara – her apartment. These characters also regularly interact in flashbacks within the shared space of a nightclub and in dreamlike states of the deep blue as they see themselves in the story of the 52Hz whale. The narrative of the play is told in non-sequential order with each character’s arc playing out in isolation in his or her own separate timeline. These arcs inter-cross with one another throughout the play.
At the heart of the story is Maddie, an ordinary girl with an ordinary life, she’s in her mid-twenties and is waiting for someone to find her. She is deceased for the plays entirety and the play alludes to her suicide. Over a fifty two day span Maddie waits and ponders on her own isolation from the outside word; she fondly speaks of her brother, watches her phone light up with text messages, wishes she could have informed her work and blankly stares at the mysterious parcel mistakenly delivered to her apartment. She longs for someone to show they care for her – to barge through her front door and see what her life has become; a rotting corpse lying in a bath. Throughout this time of waiting Maddie is seemingly aware of the four people attempting and failing to make contact with her through various means of communication. With this knowledge Maddie reflects and takes herself back to a night at the club when she last interacted with these same four people.
Tim is Maddie’s brother currently on his first major voyage at sea – he is looking for the mysterious 52 Hertz whale. Tim sends video messages home to Maddie detailing his expedition and desire to find the whale in order to give his life more purpose. He eagerly awaits a response that will never come. In flashbacks we see Tim and Maddie in the nightclub sharing a celebratory drink of Tim’s upcoming voyage to sea.
Asha is a musician and insecure ex-lover of Maddie, she wishes to no longer to be single to the point of desperation and believes Maddie has blown her off for no reason. Asha finds solace in the world of her phone, dating apps and the story of the 52 Hertz whale. Over the course of the play Asha writes a song to help her deal with her loss of Maddie and her companionship in the whale. In flashbacks we see Asha and Maddie first meet at the bar of the nightclub.
Damon is a social outcast and co-worker of Maddie and in her absence has had to take on the workload for both of them. Damon recounts his experiences of social exclusion and finds comfort with the company of his pet fish, Roger. This is Damon’s only friend and together he imagines them taking on the world. In flashbacks we see Damon attempting to make small talk with Maddie at the nightclub on the night of his birthday.
Tamara lives up the road from Maddie and is dealing with the loss of her partner, Patrick. She continue to ring his phone in order to find comfort in her displaced lifestyle. Meanwhile she is also waiting on a parcel that has been wrongly delivered to Maddie’s address. In flashbacks Tamara and Maddie bond in the nightclub bathroom.
The stories and lives of our five characters come together at the conclusion of the play. Maddie’s body is discovered by Tamara after she finally tracks down her parcel, Asha performs her song, Damon loses his only companion and Tim, unaware of Maddie’s circumstances, finds the whale.
Review Quotes (max 3 quotes): "52 Hertz is a prime example of minimalism done right, with an easy to follow dynamic plot, unique and real characters and a deep message about isolation to take away. This show is one whale that I’m glad to have found." - Jordan Baynes (Fourth Wall Media)
"Theatre Award Fringe World 2018 Nomination"
"52 Hertz is a smart, snappy, modern tragedy that expertly weaves a narrative of human connection and disconnection into a digital communications vortex. This is a poignant and touching tale that pulls at the heartstrings and inspires us all to reach out to the people around us. Delivered with humour, sass, style and keen wits, 52 Hertz packs an emotional punch but doesn’t let the audience dwell for too long because before we know it, we are already engaged in the next scene." - Myles Mitchell (Denmark Bulletin)