Gatsby’s Legacy

Colliding Scopes Theatre Presents an adaptation of the Great Gatsby

Nikki Clydesdale, ArtSci ‘16, playing the role of Pammy Buchanan.
Nikki Clydesdale, ArtSci ‘16, playing the role of Pammy Buchanan.
Photo: 

Colliding Scopes Theatre presents twisting and turning storylines and plenty of intrigue within Legacy, a freely-adapted sequel to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s the Great Gatsby.

The hour-long production — a twist from the classic novel — centres on the mystery behind Gatsby’s inheritance, all of which has since been claimed by Meyer Wolfsheim.

In addition to central characters in The Great Gatsby, including Nick Carraway, Daisy and Tom Buchanan and Meyer Wolfsheim, Legacy also adds a few new characters to the mix, including Pammy Buchanan (Daisy and Tom’s daughter) and reporter Jane Pollock.

As Wolfsheim attempts to insist the legitimacy of his claim to Gatsby’s fortune, Carraway constantly tries to accuse him of fraud. This causes tensions to rise among the Buchanan family.

Taking matters into her own hands, Pammy investigates Gatsby’s house — the “rotting space corpse” as Tom calls it — where she discovers a letter left to her by Gatsby, describing the true nature of her mother’s relationship with him. It also proclaims her as sole heir to his fortune.

At the urging of reporter Jane Pollock, who is looking for her “big break,” and Carraway, eager to reveal Wolfsheim’s true colours, Pammy confronts her family. It’s Tom, oblivious to Gatsby’s love for his wife this entire time, who ends up attempting to comfort the hysterical and self-centred Daisy.

In the end it’s Daisy, unaware of her family’s own needs, who convinces her husband to send her off to the British Isles. Tom, now the hero of the story, is forced to deal with Wolfsheim and his impending life changes.

What made Legacy unique was the way that audience members were able to walk around the set and talk to the actors during the play.The actors were forced to use improv, which added an element of uncertainty to the play.

Ben Sterlin, ArtSci ’18, — playing the role of Nick Carraway — revealed that while all of the actors’ lines were scripted, every time an actor spoke to the audience, it was improv.

“We had to develop stories about what we were going to say in the beginning of the show,” Sterlin said.

“By the end, I had different stories about various items of Gatsby’s, so that process was pretty cool to do.”

The play’s location at the Grey House on Bader Lane allowed simultaneous scenes to occur in different rooms throughout the space, letting audience members move from upstairs to downstairs in a leisurely manner.

“What was really great about the space was that when you were standing in certain parts of the house you could hear multiple conversations in different rooms,” said co-director Jesse Gazic on their choice at the Grey House.

“You have the ability to oversee everything, but still also are compelled to follow different tracks.”

In terms of inspiration for Gatsby, Gazic said that much of what Colliding Scopes Theatre strives to do as a company is to create a living, breathing organic environment for the audience to play into. “Gatsby’s world just seemed so rich and detailed, and students can relate to looking at a party more critically, so in the end Gatsby was the best fit to create an environment out of,” Gazic said.

Tags: 

All final editorial decisions are made by the Editor(s)-in-Chief and/or the Managing Editor. Authors should not be contacted, targeted, or harassed under any circumstances. If you have any grievances with this article, please direct your comments to journal_editors@ams.queensu.ca.

When commenting, be considerate and respectful of writers and fellow commenters. Try to stay on topic. Spam and comments that are hateful or discriminatory will be deleted. Our full commenting policy can be read here.