A Night On Everest
Heason Events is pleased to present a double bill of entertainment from the top of the world. On Saturday Jan 24th the Pavilion Arts Centre will play host to:
Life and Death on the Roof of the World, a one-man play about George Mallory.
Epic Of Everest
A remarkable film record of the legendary Everest expedition of 1924, newly restored by the BFI National Archive.
Tickets £11 and £14 available via the Buxton Opera House website.
Starts 7.30pm. There will be an interval between the play and the film.
The Play (60min):
George Mallory and Sandy Irvine vanished into the mist high on Everest in 1924, they were never seen alive again. Were they the first men to climb the world’s highest mountain? In this dramatic one man play John Burns asks one question. If George Mallory had survived what demons would have haunted him?
After a successful run at the Edinburgh Fringe John Burns is now touring his one man play about mountaineer George Mallory. In reality Mallory met his death attempting to be the first person to climb the mountain in the play the climber has survived and relives his three attempts on Everest.
“I’m delighted to be able to bring my play to Buxton. I love the wildness of the moors of the Peak District and have spent many days walking on its hills and climbing on its crags, I’m looking forward to coming back to an area I love.”
“When I began writing the play I knew very little about Mallory other than he had lost his life on the mountain. When I began to explore who he was and the challenges he faced I became fascinated by this driven man.”
Like many of his generation Mallory was shaped by his experiences in World War One and the horrors he endured there. He came away from that experience with a sense of duty and sacrifice. Between the wars Everest became a symbol of national pride and the attempts to climb it were followed with all the fervour of the moon landings of decades later.
Burns says, “We will never know if Mallory was the first person to stand on the summit of Everest. Only he and sandy Irvine, his climbing partner, hold the key to that question. I am certain that Mallory had the courage and the determination to overcome any barrier in his path, even if it cost him his life.”
In the play Mallory relives the disaster of the avalanche in 1922 when seven porters were killed. Ever after he was wracked by guilt and felt responsible for their loss. Just as poignant is his love for his wife Ruth and his anguish at having to leave her knowing that they might never see each other again.
Very well conceived. Convincingly acted and brilliantly executed. A good hour well spent. Highly recommend.- Audience comment
Imaginative, sincere in content. Intelligent script well acted - Audience comment
Broadway Baby **** “a fine show — and a worthy tribute to one of the heroes of mountaineering.” Review.
We were overwhelmed by how positive our audiences were in their response to the play. It is no exaggeration to say, “audiences loved the show.” This is demonstrated by audience feedback. We asked, at the end of some of our shows, for audiences to give us feedback on what they had just seen.
Here is a sample of what they said...
Excellent, really enjoyed it, time flew by.
Excellent, well acted, loved the interplay with Moby Dick. Atmosphere of the war and loss all well portrayed. Sustained attention throughout. 5 Star production.
A sensible and credible "might have been" account of how the 1924 expedition could have ended. Well acted, and I could only detect one factual inaccuracy. Comment by John Norton son of Edward Norton, leader of the 1924 expedition
The Film (85mins)
The third attempt to climb Everest culminated in the deaths of two of the finest climbers of their generation, George Mallory and Andrew Irvine, and sparked an on-going debate over whether or not they did indeed reach the summit. Filming in brutally harsh conditions with a hand-cranked camera, Captain John Noel captured images of breathtaking beauty and considerable historic significance. The film is also among the earliest filmed records of life in Tibet and features sequences at Phari Dzong (Pagri), Shekar Dzong (Xegar) and Rongbuk monastery. But what resonates so deeply is Noel’s ability to frame the vulnerability, isolation and courage of people persevering in one of the world’s harshest landscapes. The restoration by the BFI National Archive has transformed the quality of the surviving elements of the film and reintroduced the original coloured tints and tones. Revealed by the restoration, few images in cinema are as epic – or moving – as the final shots of a blood red sunset over the Himalayas.
A newly commissioned score composed, orchestrated and conducted by Simon Fisher Turner (The Great White Silence) features a haunting combination of electronic music, found sounds, western and Nepalese instruments and vocals.
New restoration by the BFI National Archive. The restoration was supported by The Eric Anker-Petersen Charity.
- Pavilion Arts Centre (part of the Buxton Opera House)