Standing on Ceremony: A Play From the Heart

Natasha Franks previews the latest project to come from the Mermaids.

St Andrews does not lack for an active LGBT+ scene. dRAG Walk and Glitterball regularly sell out, and our LGBT+ Society is a Union-affiliated powerhouse. Standing on Ceremony will occupy its own niche within the University, one of heartwarming satire and unbiased discussion.

Director Nataliea Abramowitz describes the goal of piece to be representing different perspectives. “We don’t agree with everything our characters say,” she tells us, “but it’s important to display a range of opinions.”

The play takes on the topical subject of gay marriage. Rather then grandstanding, the debate is presented in a series of snapshots, eight short scenes that each provide a glimpse into the lives of the people affected. The rapid-fire nature of the play requires a keen directorial eye. “Each play is written by a different writer,” explains Nataliea. “So each one has a very different style. We’ve also got multiple people playing multiple characters, so we need to find ways to establish tone and characterisation very quickly.”

Photo: Standing on Ceremony, Rehearsal
Photo: Standing on Ceremony, Rehearsal

Penned exclusively by LGBT+ playwrights, the plays touch upon the personal side of gay marriage. Publicity Director Eilidh Hughes describes one scene that addresses the idea of civil unions: “They argue that civil unions used to be something special to the LGBT+ community, and the world ‘marriage’ might detract from that. Whether you agree with that statement or not, it’s still interesting to see the reasoning behind it.”

Standing on Ceremony is, above all, a showcase: a showcase of talent, of opinion, of pride. The rollercoaster of emotions ascends and descends at breakneck speeds, sure to incite both laughter and tears from the audiences. Following a month of casting and rehearsals, the show will debut on Friday 7th October at the Barron Theatre. 




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